NBTel was founded as the New Brunswick Telephone Company in 1888 after Bell Telephone Company of Canada's attempt to establish telephone service in the Maritime provinces failed. The company purchased the assets in New Brunswick, Canada from Bell Canada in 1889. In 1973, NBTel purchased the last independent telephone operator in New Brunswick, giving it a monopoly for telephone service in the province.
Owned by holding company Bruncor, which Bell Canada gained a controlling interest in during the 1960s, NBTel was based in Saint John, New Brunswick, until its merger with the other Stentor Alliance companies in Atlantic Canada to form Aliant in 1999.
- NBTel was the first telephone company in Canada to be given Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission approval to provide television services in 1998 and was the first to launch this into service in 1999.
- NBTel was the first Canadian telephone company to provide internet service.
- In 1993, NBTel became the first telephone company in North America to use a fully digital switching network.
- NBTel was the first company to offer all customers voice mail service.
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