TekSavvy

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TekSavvy Solutions, Inc.
Type Privately held
Industry Telecommunications
Founded January 1998 (1998-01)
Headquarters Chatham, Ontario, Canada
Key people Marc Gaudrault (CEO)
Products Internet, Telecommunications
Parent None
Website www.teksavvy.com

TekSavvy Solutions Inc. (TSI) is a Canadian residential and business telecommunications company based in Chatham, Ontario, with branches in Toronto, and Gatineau, Québec. In most of the country, it is a wholesale operator and competitive local exchange carrier, providing a last mile service that utilizes existing infrastructure from Bell Canada, Bell Aliant, Rogers Communications, Cogeco Cable, Telus Communications, Shaw and Videotron.

History[edit]

TekSavvy Solutions Inc. was founded in January 1998.[1] The company ranked 27th in 2008, 33rd in 2009, 44th in 2010, and 33rd 2011 on the list of fastest growing companies in Canada on Canadian Business Magazine's Profit 100 list.[2] By 2011, it had been rated as the number one ISP in Canada by the users of DSLreports.com[3] for five years. In 2012, it was 12th on the Branham 300 Top 20 Movers & Shakers list.[4]

Services[edit]

While TekSavvy operates using "last mile" infrastructure from Bell, Rogers, Cogeco, Shaw, Telus and Vidéotron, it differs in terms of pricing and features. All cable and DSL services include unlimited uploads at all times and unlimited downloads from 2 to 8 AM.[5] TekSavvy also provides home phone services through landline and VOIP, as well as long distance packages and web hosting in eight Canadian provinces. Business Internet is also available at a higher cost than its residential counterpart.[6]

Digital subscriber line (DSL) Internet[edit]

TekSavvy offers DSL service using Bell lines in Ontario and Quebec, Telus lines in Alberta and British Columbia, and Bell Aliant lines in New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island.

Before the summer of 2011, TekSavvy could only access Bell's "Performance" speed tier, with maximum speeds of 5 Mb/s. Starting in July 2011, several months after the Canadian government allowed third-party ISPs to access higher speed tiers, TekSavvy started offering the same DSL speed tiers found at Bell. High-end plans with 10 Mbit/s upload speeds require a Sagemcom modem rental from Bell at a cost of $8/month, while all lower DSL tiers can be used with any compatible ADSL2+ modem.[7] TekSavvy later replaced the rental with rent-to-own and one-time purchase options.

On March 20, 2013, TekSavvy added a 50 Mbit/s tier, the fastest FTTN tier that Bell started offering a month earlier. TekSavvy offers the same FTTN DSL speeds available from Bell. The only exceptions are that for the slowest plans, 6 Mbit/s regular DSL and 7 Mbit/s FTTN DSL is sold by TekSavvy instead of Bell's 5 Mbit/s plans. All plans offer a choice between 300 GB or unlimited Internet access, while the 6 and 7 Mbit/s plans offer a lower-priced 75 GB option.

Cable Internet[edit]

TekSavvy's cable Internet offerings rely on Rogers, Shaw, Videotron or Cogeco infrastructure to connect customers to TekSavvy Internet. In areas served by Rogers, TekSavvy cable Internet is offered with either 6, 25, 35, 45 or 150 Mb/s download speeds with the choice of 300 GB or unlimited downloads. The 6 Mb/s plan also offers a lower-priced 75 GB option. In areas served by Cogeco, most predominantly in the Niagara region, there are 5 packages available at speeds of 6, 10, 20, 30 or 60 Mb/s with a standard bandwidth cap of 150 GB/month, excluding the 6 Mb/s service, and a 300 GB or unlimited option for a fee. The same 300 GB and unlimited options are available in Chatham-Kent, Ontario and major cities in Vancouver with lower speeds due to the Cogeco and Shaw infrastructure used in those regions. In Quebec, Vidéotron provides the cable infrastructure.

Opposition to usage-based billing[edit]

TekSavvy has been very public about its stance against usage-based billing (UBB), opposing the CRTC's decision to enforce data caps on wholesale operators that would be similar to incumbents. Former CEO Rocky Gaudrault argued, in 2011, that the larger bandwidth allotments of wholesale operators is one of those operators' more distinguishable factors, stating, "The answer to future growth is not to stifle it by imposing punitive pricing but to encourage it, accommodate it, and make more money on greater volume consumed at lower prices with more efficient infrastructure." [8] TekSavvy devotes most of its news page to addressing its concerns about UBB.[9]

Policy on disclosure of subscriber personal information[edit]

TekSavvy has a policy to "not provide personal information to a 3rd party when copyright infringement is alleged unless ordered to do so by a court... [and] do its best to ensure that its customers receive notice when disclosure of their personal information is sought in such cases."[10]

Voltage Pictures v. Does[edit]

In November 2012 American film production company Voltage Pictures LLC sought disclosure of personal information belonging to approximately 2000 TekSavvy subscribers based on data collected by the Canadian anti-piracy company Canipre between September 1, 2012 to October 31, 2012.[11]

On November 14, 2012 Voltage filed a Statement of Claim in Federal Court, initiating action against TekSavvy (court file T-2058-12, Voltage Pictures LLC v. John Doe and Jane Doe)[12] seeking a court order for the release of subscribers personal information, including telephone numbers and email addresses,[13] associated with about 2000 IP addresses allegedly involved in copyright infringement.

On February 21, 2014 the Federal Court released its decision compelling TekSavvy to identify the consumers identified by Voltage as alleged downloaders while also implementing several constraints on Voltage. The court ruled that the demand letters sent by Voltage to the specified consumers be approved by a judge to ensure "there is no inappropriate language" and that "any correspondence... shall clearly state in bold type that no court has yet made a determination that such subscriber has infringed or is liable in any way for payment of damages", and that Voltage must pay TekSavvy's legal costs and any costs associated with identifying the consumers.[14] The Federal Court ruling further limited the information Voltage could request from TekSavvy, only permitting them to access the names and addresses of the subscribers in question.

TekSavvy stated in a 21 February 2014 press release that they were satisfied with the framework implemented by the Federal Court for the case, claiming that it will protect consumers by discouraging future copyright trolling, but will only provide the information when Voltage meets all conditions of the court's orders and the affected customers have been notified.[13]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "TekSavvy: About". Retrieved October 27, 2011. 
  2. ^ Rogers Communications (2011). "Profit 200". Retrieved 2 December 2011. 
  3. ^ DSL reports (2011). "Charts - The Good, The Bad and The Ugly - Issue #613". Retrieved 2 December 2011. 
  4. ^ "Branham 300 Top 20 Movers & Shakers". Branham Group Inc. Retrieved June 22, 2012. 
  5. ^ http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r28199868-Cable-Cable-unlimited-2-8am-and-upload-on-ATPIA-
  6. ^ TekSavvy (2011). "Please select your region". Retrieved 2 December 2011. 
  7. ^ "Residential Internet". TekSavvy. Retrieved 2012-03-31. 
  8. ^ Gaudrault, Rocky (February 7, 2011). "Internet usage debate, Part 1: The real myths". Financial Post. Retrieved October 27, 2011. 
  9. ^ TekSavvy News
  10. ^ TekSavvy: Copyright FAQ. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
  11. ^ Voltage Pictures LLC Statement of Claim. Retrieved July 2, 2013.
  12. ^ Court docket. Retrieved July 02, 2013
  13. ^ a b "Ruling in Filesharing Suit Imposes new Safeguards for Canadians". TekSavvy in the News. TekSavvy Solutions Inc. 21 February 2014. Retrieved 21 February 2014. 
  14. ^ The Canadian Press (21 February 2014). "TekSavvy ordered to ID alleged movie downloaders". CBC News. Retrieved 21 February 2014. 

External links[edit]