Thursday, 17 October, 2019

Comcast expands access program

Comcast expands its low-cost internet to another three million households Comcast Now Offers High-Speed Internet For Just $9.95 to Qualifying Subscribers
Emmett Howard | 09 August, 2019, 03:27

Comcast estimates that some 8 million individuals from 2 million households have been connected to the Internet at home over the life of the program, and that it has sold more than 100,000 subsidized PCs and invested about $650 million to reach 9.5 million people with digital literacy training at non-profit outfits.

Starting Tuesday, customers can also prove eligibility by providing proof of benefits from almost a dozen other federal programs, including Medicaid, SNAP, TANF, and others.

Last year, the program was opened to low income military veterans.

The expansion now includes all low-income Americans including those with disabilities and seniors.

To be eligible to apply to the program, low-income applicants simply need to show they are participating in one of more than a dozen different federal assistance programs. After an initial focus on pre-school and national school lunch programs, Internet Essentials has since expanded to include residents of public housing and those receiving federal housing assistance, low-income veterans and pilot programs for low-income seniors and community college students.

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"The Internet is arguably the most important technological innovation in history, and it is unacceptable that we live in a country where millions of families and individuals are missing out on this life-changing resource", Cohen said.

Comcast's Internet Essentials program is created to allow internet access to low-income households, with plans at $9.95 per month for those who qualify, as well as the option to purchase an internet-ready computer for $150. It may help many learn skills and get better jobs.

Comcast also will continue to offer customers the choice of purchasing a refurbished Windows 10 laptop or desktop system with Microsoft Office and Norton Security Suite installed for just $150. As a result, the program includes: multiple options to access free digital literacy training in print, online, and in person; the option to purchase an Internet-ready computer for less than $150; and low-priced, high-speed Internet service for $9.95 a month plus tax. The program is structured as a partnership between Comcast and tens of thousands of school districts, libraries, elected officials, and nonprofit community partners.

The Internet Essentials service, which costs Dollars 10 per month, provides download speeds of 15 Mbps. These customers also pay no installation fees, and no contracts or credit checks are required for service. "And there's no suggestion in any FCC proceeding that 15-Meg down speeds are not more than sufficient to be able to provide a high-quality Internet experience to any home that has that level of speed".

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