High-speed fiber optic internet service

Frequently Asked Questions

What is Trailwave?

Trailwave is an Internet service provided through a fiber optic network. It is an alternative to DSL, cable, or satellite. 

I already have Internet, so why should I get Trailwave?

Trailwave lets you surf the Web and use Internet tools up to 50 times faster than you can with DSL. You will be able to stream video and participate in Skype calls or Web conferences with no buffering. You can transfer large amounts of data like pictures, programs, and videos. And best of all, your speed won’t decrease when many people in your house or in our neighborhood are online at the same time.

How is fiber optic technology different from DSL?

Trailwave uses fiber optic cables, not the copper cables available through DSL or traditional cable. Copper networks use electricity to transmit data, but fiber optic networks use light waves, making it possible to transfer more information at faster speeds. DSL service typically offers download speeds up to 12 megabits per second, and upload speeds around 3 megabits per second. By contrast, Trailwave residential service starts at 50 megabits per second for both uploads and downloads. 

Will Trailwave be reliable?

Trailwave’s new, state-of-the-art network equipment makes it incredibly reliable. The Internet you use today is transmitted through copper wire networks that were originally built decades ago. Fiber optic networks do not conduct electricity, so Trailwave is less affected by the environmental factors that cause frequent outages with DSL. In most cases, downtime will be nearly non-existent. 

How is the customer service?

Trailwave is owned, managed, and supported by community-owned cooperatives. When you call customer service, you are talking to real people who live in our community. 

What about my TV?

Trailwave does not include cable service. However, the speed and reliability of the network mean you can stream video easily. By taking advantage of Web services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Instant Video, Aereo, and others, you can replace nearly every channel including live, broadcast television news. You don’t need a smart TV; hardware options like Google Chromecast, AppleTV, and Roku make it possible to connect these Web services to your existing TV. You can even save up to $600 a year* on cable by switching to these non-traditional Web alternatives.

*Based on the average costs of local telephone, cable, and satellite providers versus the average costs of online services.

Who is behind Trailwave and why does that matter?

Trailwave is offered and supported by a community-based, member-owned cooperative, Habersham EMC. Trailwave customers are also the member-owners of the company, ensuring its future will remain customer-focused, with the emphasis on quality service versus profits to distant shareholders. The co-op is governed by a Board of Directors made up of community members. As members, you’ll be kept informed about public meetings and annual performance.

Why do I have to sign up for service before it’s available?

If we don’t reach our neighborhood goal, Trailwave might never be available in our area. Here’s why: fiber infrastructure is complex to engineer and expensive to install, so it’s important for the co-op to invest their resources in the areas that will use it the most. 

How do I sign up?

Go to register.trailwave.com. You can sign up by phone or online through the information and links provided. Trailwave is bringing fiber service only to the neighborhoods that want it the most. To demand Trailwave in our community, enter your home address, find it on the map, select the product you want, and submit. You do not have to enter a credit card. You will be billed directly from the co-op ONLY IF we reach our goal and Trailwave is brought to our neighborhood. To make it easy, we've created a Step-by-Step Registration Guide

How much does it cost?

You don’t pay a dime unless our neighborhood reaches our campaign goal. The initial setup fee
will be based on the percentage of people in our neighborhood that sign up for service, so the more that sign up, the lower the initial costs for each of us. To view prices, check out either the Residential or Business product pages. 

When will my service be installed?

When our neighborhood zone reaches its goal, the co-op will place it on the build schedule. Each person that signed up for service will be notified of these dates.