When we first arrived at the Marina six years ago, our cell phone provider was and still is Rogers. We typically had at least 3-4 bars on Rogers when using our cell phones on site. Bell clients however, got zero bars unless they were standing in the right spot and even at that, they were lucky to get one bar. This was the only time we have been happy to be Rogers clients (we are among the rogers clients upset with their poor customer service).
Two years ago, we replaced our leaking roof and a steel roof was installed. No more leaks but our indoor cell service disappeared.
It all started around the time (coincidentally) that Rogers started sending out those annoying text messages...the texts advised that Rogers has recently turned on Extended Coverage and the message advised that I had just entered the extended coverage area. They were giving themselves a pat on the back for doing this and making sure I knew it. I didn't want to know it, I just want my phone to work seamlessly and silently - don't tell me about it - just do it. It was an effort to improve their image but had the opposite affect. These messages were all the more annoying because our cell service did NOT work.
We didn't connect the roof to the cell service problem right away.
We called Rogers, their first answer was, traffic. Too many users in the area. Seriously? Traffic in Apsley? Apsley doesn't even have a streetlight we are so small and the cottagers have barely started to arrive we explained to Rogers. It worked well last year and the year before etc. We pressed Rogers and the call was escalated.
The expert's answer was...foliage. Foliage? What does this tech expert mean...As in...trees?? Yup, trees. It was spring, the trees were in bloom and this caused a barrier to the quality of our cell service. Or, possibly they had grown taller the expert explained. That's why that techie gets paid the big bucks. To assess foliage as a barrier to providing quality service. Well that was a convenient fall back, trees are everywhere so when service fails - blame the trees. We had trees in bloom last year we explained. So why is it different this year we asked. They did not know. So, that was Roger's official answer...foliage.
Get a cell booster they said. We asked what that was. It helps improve cell service, maybe it would help we were told. When can you send this we asked. Oh, Rogers doesn't provide them, we would have to buy and install ourselves. We shouldn't have to we thought. We are paying (a LOT) for service, they should be ensuring we have it. That was where it ended, no further explanation, we'd reached the end of their assessment. We gave up. After the multitude of calls, transfers, sitting (im)patiently on hold, we were frustrated with rogers so gave up and began searching for a new cell service provider.
We were skeptical but also googled Cell Boosters, we were desperate to get service back. Their prices ranged in the hundreds of dollars. We found one on Costco.ca...it was on sale for about $450. Safe enough...Costco has a great return policy so if it didn't work, it'd go back to the store. It didn't take long to install and we instantly had 4 bars indoors. Bell customers were now also able to get service. Money well spent. The only time it fails is when we lose hydro.
We know of a few cottagers on the lake who have also invested in a booster and have heard they are very pleased. Not sure if proximity to the tower or landscape (rocks) will affect it's quality.
So in the end, it was in fact NOT foliage. Not sure when we eventually connected our roof to the loss of service but it appears that was the actual problem though at no point did the 'expert' ask if we had a steel roof. The roof had been installed in November and we didn't lose service until the spring so it didn't make sense timewise so that's why we hadn't considered it to be the problem. It just seems to be the only logical reason.
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