AT&T (NYSE:T) has announced a $2 billion commitment in the next three years to help in extending affordability, economic opportunity, and education resources to communities that do not have access to broadband services.
AT&T bringing low-cost broadband to underserved communities
The renewed commitment combines the company’s low-cost broadband offerings with community investment. The move builds on the company’s $1 billion contributions in the last three years towards supporting the country’s vulnerable communities. The company says that it is dedicated to bringing educational resources and affordability to millions without access to broadband connectivity.
John Stankey, AT&T’s CEO, said that they believe broadband connectivity is necessary for all Americans. He said that the company’s broadband networks were up to task during the pandemic mainly due to policies promoting private sector investment in multiple networks and technologies. Stankey said that the company is investing and expanding its broadband network reach while advocating for sustainable and effective public policies that help close the digital divide.
The company continues to offer discounted wireless solutions to more than 135,000 private and public K-12 schools, universities, and colleges. The offer keeps teachers and students connected in a 1:1 model and assists in education transformation beyond when schools will reopen. Fast internet will enable learning opportunities, which is why the company has stepped up its support over the last year to address education inequality.
Monthly broadband costs to reduce under EBB
AT&T also has offered qualifying households wireline internet service at less than $10 per month. As a result, the eligible customer will temporarily reduce monthly broadband costs per the Federal Emergency Broadband Benefits (EBB). Notably, the company has provided more than 30 million eligible households extra broadband subsidy of around $50 per month. Interestingly, tribal lands will be eligible for up to $75 per month, with the monthly broadband cost falling as low as $0 per month.
Stankey said that they are lauding Acting FCC chairperson Jessica Rosenworcel to make EBB available to almost 30 million households. He said that EBB is a massive step in addressing affordability.