Low-income

How the homework gap may actually be the key to solving our digital divide

Beyond supporting students, information being collected by schools across the country could prove useful when addressing the problem of the digital divide. The work to close the so-called homework gap, exacerbated when the coronavirus pandemic shut down schools and forced 50 million students to suddenly adopt remote learning, could also provide the federal and state governments a roadmap toward fixing the broader digital divide problem. The homework gap is a subset of a much larger d

Digital Inclusion Week Indeed

In the coming days, we will see major progress on a $10+ billion federal investment in digital inclusion. This moment is unprecedented. We've never seen such a large commitment to making broadband service affordable for all. And, as Congress starts to focus on long-term solutions for universal broadband, we're seeing the potential for more digital inclusion investment in the coming months.

The government is making broadband more affordable — for now. How do we make that permanent?

Congress created a $3 billion fund to provide low-income Americans with $50 per month for broadband service. The subsidies start May 12 and the program is, for now, temporary.

Broadband Equity: Addressing Disparities in Access and Affordability

The House Commerce Committee's Subcommittee on Communications and Technology held a hearing on the disparities that exist in accessing affordable, reliable high-speed internet in the US. The panel heard from the National Urban League's Joi Chaney, Public Knowledge President Chris Lewis, Francella Ochillo of Next Century Cities, and George Ford, the chief economist at the Phoenix Center.

Here's how you can apply to the FCC for the $50 discount on your broadband bill

You may be eligible for a $50 monthly coronavirus pandemic discount on your home broadband bill starting May 12.

Emergency Broadband Benefit Program to launch May 12

The Emergency Broadband Benefit Program will start May 12, 2021. Eligible households will be able to enroll in the Program to receive a monthly discount off the cost of broadband service from an approved provider.

The State of Broadband in America, Q1 2021

Access to low-priced broadband internet has increased significantly over the last year.  For the first time, more than 3 of 4 of Americans (77%) have access to low-priced wired broadband plans compared to 50% in 2020 Q1.  A low-priced broadband plan costs $60 per month or less (excluding promotional pricing), and has minimum speeds of 25 Mbps download / 3 Mbps upload. Low-priced plans are not as common at higher speeds.

Show Us the Money: Federal Broadband Support During the COVID-19 Pandemic

A number of readers have reached out to us at Benton asking for help figuring out where to find all the pools of broadband support appropriated by Congress over the past year. So we've decided to create this placeholder for all the funding we've seen in the CARES Act, the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, and the American Rescue Plan.

Nebraska PSC Commissioner Crystal Rhoades: Only 3 Percent of Eligible State Residents receiving Lifeline Aid is an Outrage

/Nebraska Public Service Commission (PSC) Commissioner Crystal Rhoades commented on the Promoting Access to Broadband Act introduced by Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Representative Sean Patrick Maloney (D-NY-18) to increase wireless and broadband access to the federal Lifeline program for low-income urban and rural Americans.

FCC Begins Emergency Broadband Benefit Program Testing

The Federal Communications Commission opened the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program to participating broadband providers for testing. This important milestone will allow these providers to familiarize themselves with the Program systems in anticipation of the impending consumer launch of the Program. As the agency continues to work to rapidly deliver much-needed relief to families across the country, I’m proud of the progress we’ve made in record time. I am thrilled that we have more than 600 providers now committed to the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program.