AT&T, the best internet providers in the region has announced that it has completed the first batch of Fixed Wireless Internet connectivity to Georgia’s rural locations. The telecom mammoth is implementing this new internet connectivity extension as part of the FCC Connect America Fund. This initiative is aimed at offering faster and cheap internet connectivity to about 40,000 locations by late 2017 and to 1.1 million locations by 2020.
The new fixed wireless internet uses a static antenna system for transmitting and receiving LTE cellular data to homes and businesses located in the region. The service will offer download speeds of about 10 Mbps and 1 Mbps Upload speeds. The service falls short under FCC’s definitions as broadband but offers interference-free service, unlike the satellite internet. This service represents an affordable solution to deliver high-speed internet to customers in rural areas.
Eric Boyer, senior vice president, Wireless, and Wired Product Marketing at AT&T said, “Access to the internet is an important tool for advancing opportunities in communities. It creates economic growth, helps increase community engagement and makes education accessible. We’re committed to utilizing available technologies to connect hard-to-reach locations.”
The service is available for a monthly fee of $60 on a 1-year contract and offers 160 GB of data. Additionally, the provider charges about $10 for every 50 GB exceeding the limit and can run to about $200 per month. AT&T is also offering discounted rates of about $10 less per month for subscription of DirecTV or cellular service.
Betsy Huber, president of the National Grange stated, “AT&T’s Fixed Wireless Internet service is a great example of the innovative thinking necessary to bring high-speed internet to rural and under-served communities. When you consider that farmers, ranchers, and other rural residents are also small business owners, the need for high-speed internet becomes obvious. This is a milestone in communications services for rural and small-town America.”
The expansion of internet connectivity into the rural areas of Georgia is one among the large-scale extension projects currently undertaken by AT&T. The carrier is expecting to expand the fixed wireless internet connectivity to about 17 more states by the end of 2017. Through the Connect America Fund, AT&T is helping residents and farmers of the region with accessibility to cheap internet technology, which enables them to use the internet for help in many aspects of business and communication.