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AT&T commits $2 billion to help close the digital divide in rural, underserved areas

Robin Layton

Apr 25, 2021 — 2 min read

Communications giant expands affordable internet offers.

Rural America

AT&T recently announced it will invest $2 billion in the next three years to help bridge the digital divide

“We believe that broadband connectivity is essential for all Americans,” said John Stankey, CEO, AT&T. 

AT&T plans to expand its offering of low-cost internet plans, as well as to utilize the Emergency Broadband Benefit program administered by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

According to a company press release, “Eligible customers will be able to temporarily reduce their monthly broadband costs by taking advantage of the Federal Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB). This government program administered by the FCC will allow more than 30 million eligible households to receive an additional subsidy of up to $50 a month. Those on Tribal lands are eligible for up to $75 per month. The monthly cost of broadband – after applying the Emergency Broadband Benefit – can fall to as low as $0 a month.”

Another option for customers is the Access from AT&T program that will continue to provide low-cost internet access to qualifying households. This five-year-old program offers free home installation, in-home Wi-Fi access and requires no deposit.

The company plans to continue its discount service to 135,000 learning institutions across the country. 

AT&T is investing in and expanding the reach of our broadband networks while also advocating for effective and sustainable public policies that help close this country’s digital divide.

John Stankey

“The EBB is a great first step in addressing affordability in the short term. We continue to encourage Congress to work on more permanent solutions with sustainable funding so that all Americans can have access to affordable broadband.”

The EBB can be applied to qualified home internet services like Access from AT&T or AT&T Internet, available in 21 states. Customers can also use it for eligible postpaid or prepaid wireless plans at AT&T, AT&T PREPAID, and Cricket Wireless, which are available in every state.

If you need help lowering your internet bill, check out Allconnect’s guide to low-income internet options.

Robin Layton

Written by:

Robin Layton

Editor, Broadband Content

Robin Layton is an editor with Allconnect. She works closely with the content team writers to ensure consumers get a fair and balanced reporting of the state of broadband services to help them understand the pro… Read more

Joe Supan

Edited by:

Joe Supan

Senior Writer, Broadband Content

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