Creating an Affordability Agenda

Cost is the primary reason that people do not subscribe to broadband. Current research suggests that low-income people can only afford to pay about $10 per month for broadband. One set of participants told researchers that affording $20 per month would be difficult; even at $10-15/month, low-income households are making tough decisions about paying for internet access vs utility bills (such as phone and electricity) and even the cost of food. To meet the challenge of providing fixed broadband at roughly $10 per month requires implementation of a variety of strategies.

Biden-Harris Administration Awards More Than $5.7 Million to Puerto Rico in ‘Internet for All’ Planning Grants

The Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) is committing $5,781,987.00 in funding from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act to Puerto Rico through the territory's first “Internet for All” grants. The grant is for deploying high-speed Internet networks and developing digital skills training programs, as well as for planning for the deployment and adoption of affordable, equitable, and reliable high-speed Internet service throughout the territory. Puerto Rico will receive $5 million to support the following:

Chicago can defeat the digital divide, help kids succeed in school

One pandemic-era program demonstrated that Chicago can solve big inequities with a spirit of partnership and the right resources. Since launching in June 2020, Chicago Connected, the country’s most comprehensive internet connectivity program for students,  has served nearly one in three CPS students — more than 100,000 students in 60,000 households. In a new report, Kids First Chicago (K1C) found the connectiv

NTCA Releases Broadband/Internet Availability Survey Report

NTCA–The Rural Broadband Association released its 2022 Broadband/Internet Availability Survey Report highlighting the ongoing efforts of rural broadband providers to deliver better broadband services to rural Americans. Survey highlights include: 

How 5G Fixed Wireless Became Verizon’s Star Player in Just One Year

2022 was an important one for Verizon fixed wireless access (FWA) as the company turned up the service using C-band spectrum and 5G in major metro markets.

What to know before you open your Comcast TV or internet bill: Rates are going up (again)

If you’re a Comcast subscriber, it’s not the most wonderful time of the year: The cable giant is raising its rates again. In a move subscribers have seen before – most recently in 2018, 2019, 2020 , and 2021 – Comcast’s TV service will see big increases in fine-print fees that it doesn’t advertise, while the large-print rates for its broadband will inch up by a smaller amount. Comcast didn’t provide specific numbers for the TV fee hikes, but journalist Phillip Swann, who covers the video business at the TV Answer Man site, recently reported figures for some markets.

North Carolina Central University Trains Digital Equity Leadership in Durham

Durham, North Carolina, is a thriving digital equity ecosystem supported by a network of community anchor institutions working to close the digital divide.

Ofcom probes transparency of telecoms price rises

Ofcom has today launched an industry-wide enforcement programme into whether in-contract price rises were set out clearly enough by phone and broadband companies before customers signed up.

Gov Hutchinson Announces First State Partnership with EducationSuperHighway to Close Broadband Affordability Gap

Gov Asa Hutchinson (R-AR) announced a state partnership with national non-profit EducationSuperHighway to develop programs and implement best practices to address broadband affordability in the state. An estimated 214,760 Arkansas’ households have access to a home broadband connection but are offline because they can't afford to connect. This broadband affordability gap is the number one cause of the nation’s digital divide, keeps 18 million U.S.

USDA Should Set ReConnect Program Performance Goals and Improve Fraud Risk Management

Since 2019, the US Department of Agriculture's (USDA) ReConnect program has awarded millions of dollars in grants and loans to broadband providers for expanding service in rural areas. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) makes three recommendations to USDA on how to improve the ReConnect Program: