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Dropped calls, no cell reception has some Edmonton residents frustrated by spotty service

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Dropped calls, no cell reception has some Edmonton residents frustrated by spotty service
Finding a good cellphone signal is proving difficult for many Albertans. As Chris Chacon reports, people across Edmonton say dropped calls and no reception are posing a problem even though the live in the city – Oct 20, 2022

Having a good cellphone signal is proving difficult for many Albertans — and not just those who live in rural areas where spotty service is to be expected.

Global News reported about the problem of dropped calls and no reception in Calgary this week, prompting people in Edmonton to speak out saying they’re suffering the same fate.

Amanda Delainey has been living in the McConachie neighbourhood for a few years now. The area is in the city’s northeast, near 66 Street and Anthony Henday Drive.

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While she enjoys her community, there is one big problem: cellphone service inside her home.

“We get absolutely zero reception,” the Telus Mobility customer said.

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With winter around the corner, and having a small child, she fears this could lead to a serious issue.

“Heaven forbid there is a snow storm or anything like that I’m completely stranded with a baby,” Delainey said.

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The spotty cell service isn’t only in the north part of the city.

Edmonton resident Pierre Fagnan looking at his cellphone in the Summerside area on Thursday, Oct. 20, 2022. Global News

Pierre Fagnan lives in the popular southeast community of Summerside. It’s a large and established but still growing community — some houses have been there for decades while others are still being built.

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Fagnan is a customer of Bell Mobility and said he and neighbours are also dealing poor reception.

“In the house its like no man’s land,” Fagnan said.

Both Fagnan and Delainey said they’ve reached out to their providers on numerous occasions with no clear answers, other than it might be a problem tied to newer neighbourhoods.

“Its like they have no idea,” Fagnan said.

“I said, ‘Can you help me with this?’ They said, ‘No. It looks like it might be a cellphone tower issue.’

The Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC) is a public organization mandated to regulate broadcasting and telecommunications companies.

Global news obtained a letter from the CRTC sent to another customer who had complained about their service.

The email said, in part: “It appears that these are based largely on the infrastructure available in your area and the likely remedy for this would be the implementation of new cell sites.”

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Global News reached out to Telus and Bell. As of publishing, a response was not received from Bell but Telus provided a statement.

“After hearing from some of our customers in the area, we investigated our network and quickly fixed the issue that was causing these disruptions,” Telus wrote.

“We’re very sorry for the inconvenience, and thank our customers for their patience. While all voice services should have returned to normal, anyone still experiencing connectivity issues can contact our TELUS support team for more help.”

Telus went on to say it is continually working on in its networks and in 2022 is investing “$220 million across the City of Edmonton as part of our $17 billion investment in operations, network infrastructure, and spectrum across the province now through 2026.”

Delainey and Fagnan both said they are still having issues and are either going to continue to escalate the issue — or just move.

“I get better reception out in the country at my parent’s place and they are in the middle of nowhere.”

While Telus and Bell often share towers — telecommunication companies are required to explore sharing existing infrastructure before they can propose building a new tower —  each runs their own networks as they see fit. Canadian consumers pay some of the highest cellular bills in the world.

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