AT&T turns on new fiber network only months after signing contract, bringing fast and reliable internet service to Southwest Indiana consumers.
Just as Indiana farmers are harvesting the crops they planted in the spring, residents of Vanderburgh County are reaping the benefits of fiber-optic technology, planned and planted by AT&T earlier this year.
AT&T CEO John Stankey today visited Vanderburgh County, where he and County Commissioner Cheryl Musgrave announced the first locations to get AT&T Fiber as part of a countywide, $39M network deployment.
This public-private partnership is an example of AT&T’s work with local governments looking to expand broadband access and narrow the digital divide in their communities. AT&T is building fiber to more than 20,000 locations in the county – a largely rural community where roughly one-third of homes, farms and businesses did not have access to fixed broadband service before this fiber build.
“We have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to bring high-speed, reliable broadband to communities across the country,” said AT&T CEO John Stankey. “Combining public sector funding and private sector investment is the most cost-effective way to ensure more Americans are able to take advantage of robust connectivity. This type of public-private partnership can serve as a model to help close the digital divide once and for all.”
Vanderburgh County officials used federal funds made available by the American Rescue Plan Act of 2020 to bring fiber broadband to the area. Under that agreement, Vanderburgh County contributed $9.9M in public funds to the project and AT&T covered the remaining $29.7M.
Vanderburgh County officials recently agreed to extend the network to 90 additional locations, bringing fiber coverage to more unincorporated parts of the county.
“If you live in a big city, you probably take your high-speed internet for granted. But it’s a different story in rural parts of the country,” said Cheryl Musgrave, commissioner, Vanderburgh County. “Fortunately, through this collaboration with AT&T, thousands of our rural neighbors will have a new story to tell, because they’ll also have access to fiber-powered broadband.
“I’m truly excited to see the impact this new connectivity will have on our schools and families, and the economic growth of our community,” Musgrave added.
AT&T worked quickly to bring the benefits of fiber to Vanderburgh County residents and businesses, with the network core becoming operational only seven months after the previously announced contract agreement was finalized. That allowed AT&T to connect the first fiber locations earlier than expected. The project will be completed by November 2023.
The new fiber network is capable of delivering speeds up to 5 Gbps on both upload and download. The faster speeds and capacity mean customers can now connect to data intensive online tools and applications, deploy precision agriculture technologies and access vital education resources.
AT&T has extensive experience deploying fiber-optics across Indiana. In fact, hundreds of thousands of locations in the state have access to AT&T Fiber today. AT&T is also currently working with the City of Boonville and the City of Martinsville on public-private partnerships to bring AT&T Fiber to those communities.
AT&T is committed to connecting more Americans to reliable, high-speed broadband internet in several ways, including expanding and upgrading our network and participating in the federal Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). The ACP provides eligible households with a benefit of up to $30 a month (up to $75 on qualifying Tribal lands) to reduce the cost of broadband service and can be applied to all our AT&T Fiber speed tiers. Additionally, you can apply your ACP benefit to Access from AT&T to get internet speeds of up to 100Mbps, where available, for $0.