Ana SayfaGenelThe pandemic-era Affordable Connectivity Program is officially ending

The pandemic-era Affordable Connectivity Program is officially ending

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The up to $30 monthly broadband discount (up to $75 for those on Tribal lands) helped 23 million low-income households in every county in the US access high-speed internet during a period when that connection became more vital than ever as businesses and schools shut their doors. The Federal Communications Commission and industry players have warned for months that the program would soon run out of money unless Congress found a way to fund it, but the money never materialized.

“Without Congressional action to extend funding for the program, millions of households are now at risk of losing their internet connections,” the White House said in a fact sheet announcing the final day of the program. “President Biden is once again calling on Congress to extend funding for the Affordable Connectivity Program, so tens of millions of Americans can continue to access this essential benefit.”

The White House called out more than a dozen internet service providers, including AT&T, Comcast, Spectrum, and Verizon, that have voluntarily agreed to offer plans for $30 or less to low-income households through the end of the year. Those commitments will cover up to 10 million households eligible for the Affordable Connectivity Program, according to the White House.

In a letter to Senate Commerce Committee Chair Maria Cantwell (D-WA) on Thursday, FCC Chair Jessica Rosenworcel said that in a survey, 77 percent of Affordable Connectivity Program households indicated the end of the program “would disrupt their service by making them change their plans or lead to them dropping internet service entirely.”

“It is not too late to save the Nation’s largest broadband affordability program,” Rosenworcel said in a note on the FCC website on Friday. “The ACP was too impactful and has too much support from both parties on Capitol Hill and across the country to just move on and say it was nice while it lasted. Bipartisan efforts to provide more funding for the ACP are ongoing, and the FCC is ready to resume the program as soon as any additional funding is provided.”

Disclosure: Comcast is an investor in Vox Media, The Verge’s parent company.



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