What is wireless broadband?

Wireless broadband is a service that uses radio signals to deliver high-speed Internet access through the air. An antenna outside your home or office converts those signals to an Ethernet connection that plugs into your computer or router, providing you with reliable, high-speed Internet access that's always on. No telephone or cable service is needed to have wireless broadband.

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Is service available everywhere?

No. Our wireless broadband signals can travel up to 15 miles from a tower, so the service is often available where cable and DSL is not. However, sometimes hills and foliage limit the range of the signals. Our technician will make sure the signal is good before installing the service. Call us, or use the pre-qualification tool on our web site, to find out if you are in our service area.

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Who installs the connection?

Mercury Network employees do. Mercury does not use independent contractors to install or repair its wireless broadband service.

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What equipment do I need?

Generally speaking, you just need a computer with an Ethernet card. Specific system requirements are listed in the System Requirements section. All other equipment is included on a rental basis in the prices shown.

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Can you install a wireless router for me?

Yes. We install both wired and wireless networks. Ask your Mercury Network representative or visit the IT Services section of our web site for details.

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How long does it take to get?

From order to installation, it typically takes a couple days to a couple weeks, depending on our current work load.

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Do I need telephone or cable service in order to have wireless broadband from Mercury?

No. Wireless broadband does not use telephone lines or cable. Instead, we use radios and antennas to deliver high-speed Internet service through the air. We often hear from callers who have kept their home phone line only so they could have DSL, but they would rather cancel it and use their cell phone exclusively. Others have told us they would like to switch to DirecTV or Dish Network for the superior picture quality and channel selection, but keep cable to get a lower rate on cable Internet. Wireless broadband from Mercury Network frees you from phone and cable company combination "deals" that lock you in to services you don't want. With Mercury Network, you can get the service you want from the company you want.

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I have Mercury for dial-up. Can I upgrade to wireless broadband?

Yes. You can upgrade from dial-up to wireless broadband at any time. Upgrades are processed as two separate actions: a new order for wireless broadband and a cancellation order for dial-up. To upgrade your dial-up service to wireless broadband, place an order for wireless broadband. After the service is installed, call us and cancel your dial-up account. We will refund the amount paid on the unused portion of dial-up service back to you.

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Are your prices "introductory" and will they change?

The prices published are our standard rates. While price changes can occur, we work hard to establish fair plans and prices that will remain stable over a long period of time. For example, the $17.95 a month rate that we charge for dial-up service today is the same price we charged in 1996. The part of the price that may be promotional is the installation fee. From time to time, we run promotions in the form of rebates and/or instant credits that help offset the installation cost to customers. These promotions can change with every calendar quarter.

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What does the antenna look like?

We use different styles of antennas depending on the condition of the signal at your location. The most common is an off-white panel antenna that is no larger than a DirecTV satellite dish. Another style is a yagi antenna. It looks like a broomstick lying flat on its side and can be up to 6 feet in length. The last type of antenna that we use is a grid dish that is roughly 3' x 2' in size. Because of their larger size, we allow customers to cancel their order without penalty when an antenna over 3.5 feet must be used.

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I live in an area that has a community association that prohibits or limits the installation of antennas. What can I do?

Our antennas are covered by Federal Over-The-Air Reception Devices (OTARD) rules. OTARD rules supercede state and local laws and association rules and covenants, and permit our antennas to be installed on any privately owned property as necessary to receive our wireless broadband signals. Your local government or community association cannot deny installation of our antenna. They may require a permit, but they cannot charge a fee for the permit, and requests for a permit must be instantly granted; they cannot be delayed or denied. Details on OTARD rules can be found at http://www.fcc.gov/mb/facts/otard.html.

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Are you FCC Licensed?

The equipment and frequencies we use are governed by and comply with FCC licensing, rules and regulations.

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What is Standard Professional Installation?

Professional Installation means that we send a technician to your location to install the service. Standard means that it includes thirty minutes of cabling labor and 100 feet of cable. In the event that your installation exceeds the labor or cable allowance, additional labor will be billed at $15 every 15 minutes, and additional cable will be billed $0.50 a foot. We will estimate whether your installation will be standard or not when we perform the site survey. You may cancel your order after the site survey is performed if we determine that there will be non-standard installation charges.

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Do you provide technical support for my service?

Yes. Technical Support is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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Do you provide repair for my service?

Yes. Mercury Network is responsible for making sure that the connection works through the Ethernet port of the radio. Repair and/or replacement of rented equipment that fails during "normal wear and tear" is provided at no charge. Repair and/or replacement of rented equipment that fails for any other reason, including lightning or storm damage or negligence, cable not under 30-day warranty, or trouble diagnosed as a customer equipment problem, will be billed a $75 trip fee plus labor billed at $15 every 15 minutes after the 30 minutes included with the trip fee, cable billed at $0.50 per ft, and the price of equipment replaced. Lightning- or storm-damaged equipment may be covered under your homeowner's insurance policy. Ask your insurance agent for details. All equipment provided must be returned to Mercury Network in the same condition in which it was provided, reasonable wear and tear expected. You are responsible for paying for the replacement or repair of damaged equipment.

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