Monday, January 9, 2023

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Struggling To Afford Broadband At Home Theres A $50 Monthly Benefit You Should Know About

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Americans who qualify can use the Emergency Broadband Benefit to knock $50 off their internet bill each month.

Remote learning, telehealth, online socializing and more pandemic-era norms have pushed our internet usage to the max.

In the age of COVID-19, a reliable home internet connection is borderline essential, but broadband isnt always easy for Americans to afford. If struggles like those sound familiar or if you lost your job or income during the past year theres a government subsidy program called the Emergency Broadband Benefit that might help. Those who qualify can sign up now to receive $50 off their monthly internet bill, among other benefits.

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At& t Internet 100 Plan

If you live in a location where fiber is not available but you still want an AT& T plan, their broadband plans may be a good option. These plans offer download speeds up to 100 Mbps, depending on where you live. This is perfect for older adults who want to connect with their family on social networks, download music, or stream movies and television on a few devices. Again, the speeds available will vary depending on your geographic location, and prices start at $55 per month. In terms of value, AT& T’s broadband plans offer decent value if 100 Mbps speeds are available in your area.

Savings Tip: AT& T offers a $10 discount on their fixed wireless plans when you bundle with a qualifying postpaid AT& T wireless plan.

Free Internet Lifeline Broadband

A new LifeLine proposal has been put forward. Low-income families can obtain discounted Internet and telephone services through LifeLine Broadband, a free government program. The Broadband plan from Lifeline costs $ 9.25 per month and includes minutes for voice calls and high-speed Internet access. Individuals with an income at or below 135% of the poverty level recipients of SNAP or SSI benefits students participating in the National School Lunch Program and retired veterans are eligible for the program.

Individuals and families with children who meet certain requirements can access the Internet at a reduced cost through some cable providers. To extend Internet access to homes that would not be able to pay for this service themselves, the FCC and the federal government have formed partnerships with organizations like Comcast.

There are programs like Comcasts Internet Essentials for homes with children, as well as a low-cost Tablet or computer for some families. There are also other programs that may lower the amount of past due bills for Internet service. Since access to the Internet should be a right that all households should have, there are numerous resources available to families that qualify for low-income assistance.

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The Affordable Connectivity Program Can Help Pay For At& T Services

Among other things, the Affordable Connectivity Program allows qualified households to lower their internet or wireless costs by $30 per month, or by $75 per month if they live on Tribal lands. AT& T is participating in the program, and the Affordable Connectivity Program can help qualified customers pay for one of multiple differentAT& T InternetandAT& T Wirelessservices.

Find Out If You Qualify

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There are three different ways to qualify for the ACP benefit. You are eligible if you meet any one of the three qualifications below:

  • Your income is at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines
  • You or someone in your household participates in one of these other programs:
  • Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program , formerly known as Food Stamps

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What We Like About At& t Internet

  • Very fast connection speeds: AT& T offers some of the fastest internet connection speeds on the market, making sure you get the information you need when you need it.
  • Unlimited data: There are no data caps with AT& T’s fiber plans, meaning you can stream, chat, and browse as much as you’d like with no overage fees or decrease in speeds.
  • No annual contract: Not having a contract means that you have the flexibility to change your plans as your needs change. Also, if you move, you will not have to pay any cancellation charges or early termination fees.
  • No promotional pricing: Many providers offer promotional rates that increase after 12 or 24 months. AT& T doesn’t do this, so you won’t have to worry about price hikes. Do keep in mind that AT& T can change their prices at any time however, they won’t automatically increase after the first year.

Free Internet Is It Really Free

Depend on the situations and programs you are applying for any free internet assistance based on your income you get these grants. if you fall under low income category the possibilities are there to get a free internet connection with free installation, if your income is bit more you will get some subsidy or in other word we say you will get low cost internet connection. rest is depend on your internet service provider, you can ask your internet service provider for these assistance.

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Get A Laptop For Free From St Vincent De Paul

In the United States, you may be able to get a free laptop from a not-for-profit organization called St Vincent De Paul. This organization is well-known for providing furniture to families in need, free of charge. On the website, there is a page that has a section called Get Assistance Here. When you scroll through that list you will find all the services and assistance offered by St Vincent De Paul. Click the location you happen to be at the moment.

They will direct you to your own states St Vincent De Paul. You will be able to find out about all the available services you can get for free in the place you live in. Inform them of your need and you never know, you may be able to avail of a free laptop in the soonest possible moment.

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Internet Cost And The Digital Divide

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Most people would jump at the opportunity to save money on any of their monthly bills, but internet access is an area where fair and affordable pricing is especially important. Especially since the COVID-19 pandemic, many day-to-day activities have moved to the internet. If your job depends on the internet, its not just a convenienceits a necessity.

This dependency on the internet has allowed many companies to engage in anticompetitive practices and has created a lack of competition among broadband providers.8 Even though the internet was developed in the United States and created with public funds, Americans pay higher bills and get lower speeds than people in many other countries.

In July 2021, President Biden issued an executive order instructing the FCC to address some of these issues by preventing ISPs from engaging in certain anticompetitive practices, making pricing more transparent, limiting excessive early termination fees, and restoring net neutrality.8 If implemented by the FCC, these measures could reduce the cost of internet access for many Americans.

For more information, learn more about broadband coverage in the US and what you can do to improve it on a local level.

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New Access From At& t Plan + New Federal Benefit = Free Internet

New low-cost broadband plans with speeds up to 100 Mbps and no data caps

AT& T* is driving down the cost of home internet for eligible households to the best monthly rate possible $0. Available starting today, this free option is made possible by combining a new plan from our low-cost Access from AT& T program with federal benefits from the Affordable Connectivity Program.

Free internet sounds too good to be true. How is AT& T making this possible?

The Access from AT& T program now provides faster internet plans with up to 100 Mbps of symmetrical speeds for $30 per month, an increase from the 10 Mbps maximum provided in our original Access from AT& T plan. In addition, theres no cap on data usage with the new $30 Access from AT& T plans.1

Customers who prefer our original Access from AT& T plans and have speeds of 10Mbps or less available, dont have to worry. You can still take advantage of reliable internet with our $5 – $10 per month plans.1

All households that qualify and enroll with AT& T Internetfor ACP will also qualify for our Access from AT& T program, including the newest speed tier. Eligible households that take advantage of the up to $30 per month ACP benefit can then receive internet service at no monthly charge.

How do I take advantage of free internet?

You can choose to apply your ACP benefit to our Access from AT& T plan, or you can apply it to most of our existing AT& T Internet plans. Check out which AT& T internet plans are available in your area.

Heres What Youll Get:

  • Unlimited talk, text, & high-speed data that cant slow down based on how much you use
  • 5G access included
  • AT& T ActiveArmorSM advanced mobile securityDownload the free AT& T ActiveArmor mobile security app with a compatible smartphone to get advanced features like Public Wi-Fi Protection and Identity Monitoring. Youll automatically get 24/7 proactive network security.Free app with Public Wi-Fi Protection, Identity Monitoring, and more.
  • 50GB Hotspot data per line per monthAfter 50GB, mobile hotspot speed slowed to a maximum of 128Kbps.
  • Unlimited talk, text and data in and between Mexico & Canada2G off net data speeds may apply.
  • Unlimited texting from U.S. to 200+ countries
  • Unlimited talk, text & high-speed data in 19 Latin American countriesCoverage and data speeds vary. Intl usage should not exceed Domestic.No extra cost.
  • Signature Program members save up to $10/mo. per line through your work or organization

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Free Internet From Local Libraries

Across the country, public libraries offer wireless Internet access to all visitors during operating hours. There is no charge for this service. Using the library network, you can connect a mobile or pocket device -or even your laptop- to the Internet, so you can study or work. Public computers are also available at the library for use in job searches, research, and other activities.

Am I Eligible For The Program

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To be eligible for the subsidized internet service from AT& T, it is a must to check off specific requirements determined by AT& T under the FCC Lifeline Assistance Program. The household must have at least one resident member participating in:

  • Supplemental Nutritional Access Program
  • Supplementary Security Income for California residents
  • National School Lunch and Head Start programs
  • Income threshold

Plus, there must be no outstanding debt with the AT& T internet service within the past six months or under the Access program.

The Access program requires you to verify your eligibility on an annual basis. Its called recertification. AT& T will update you in advance of your recertification date. If you follow all the required steps by the deadline, you will continue to reap the benefits of the program. But, if you fail to recertify by the specified date or fail to update AT& T with your intent to terminate the service, the ISP will cancel your program discount, and charge you at the prevailing standard rate.

Its also important to note that only one discounted internet connection is allowed per family/household.

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How Can Seniors Get Free Internet

Seniors can get free internet through the FCC Lifeline program if they participate in the Veterans Pension and Survivors Benefit. Many programs, such as the Comcast Internet Essentials program and EveryoneOn, also provide free or affordable training courses for seniors.

For more information, check out our look at the best internet plans and discounts for seniors.

Directv And At& t Internet Bundles

Many older adults use the television for news, information, and entertainment in addition to the internet. If you bundle your TV and internet services with AT& T, you can save on your monthly bill when compared to paying for them separately.

FYI: Are you new to the world of internet plans and providers? Head to our guide to internet for seniors. We cover ways to get the best deals, the top providers, tips for staying safe online, and more!

DIRECTV offers satellite and streaming TV packages with up to 330 channels, depending on the package you choose. These packages can be bundled with AT& T’s fiber internet plans, starting at $129.99 per month for the first year, with auto and paperless billing discount. You’ll also have access to more than 80,000 on-demand shows and movies, and you can record your favorite shows to watch later with cloud storage. Whether you’re having a movie night with friends or watching a show with the kiddos, adding a DIRECTV STREAM or satellite package to your internet plan really ups the entertainment options available to you.

Quick Tip: Visit our guide to the best internet providers for seniors to compare AT& T to other top providers.

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How Can I Get Free Lifetime Internet Access

Thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic, there are many emergency assistance programs currently available. But if you want completely free internet access for the rest of your life, your best options are NetZero or FreedomPop. You can also work toward other long-term solutions for affordable internet, such as building a community mesh network or working with organizations like ConnectHomeUSA in starting a digital inclusion program in your area.

What Does The Program Offer

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AT& T Access provides a discounted internet service to low-income households that qualify under pre-defined criteria. The program is available to all citizens residing in AT& Ts 21-state wireline footprint.

Depending on network infrastructure you get up to 25 Mbps fast internet for $10. In areas, where the network only allows access to lower speeds, the monthly service charge is also lower. The only thing that may add up to the monthly service charge is any one-time transactional fee, monthly cost recovery surcharge, or taxes.

Based on the speed the AT& T network is able to deliver, subscribers get a monthly data allowance of 150GB to 1TB. There is however a $10 overage fee for every additional 50GB of data used. Eligible families dont have to worry about the upfront installation cost as AT& T waives that for participating households. In-home Wi-Fi is free of cost, and so is access to the AT& T nationwide Wi-Fi hotspot network.

So, all-in-all you can enjoy high-speed internet at a fixed monthly price, without a contract holding you down!

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The Affordable Connectivity Program Benefit Can Help Pay For At& T Internet Plans

The ACP is a federal government program that can help eligible customers pay for their home internet service. Through the ACP, eligible customers can reduce their AT& T Internet bill by up to $30 per month*, or up to $75 per month if they live on qualified Tribal Lands. *Terms, conditions & restrs apply.

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Get A Free Laptop From The Open Education Database

If you attend specific colleges online, you may be able to get an iPad or laptop for free. In the event you apply and qualify, check to see if the tuition costs were not hiked up to make up for your free gadgets. Make sure to check which schools really do offer free laptops or computers for college. You can find a list of colleges online that give away free computers when you check the Open Education Database website. This makes it easier for you to avail of free government internet and laptop in the event you are attending college online.

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What Information Should I Provide To Qualify For The At& t Access Program

To qualify for the program, you must provide the following documents along with your application.

To prove youre a SNAP participant you must provide a copy of one of the following:

  • SNAP card displaying your name clearly
  • SNAP card government-issued I.D.
  • The benefits or SNAP participation letter

To prove you qualify based on your eligibility for the Supplemental Security Income , you must provide a copy of the following:

  • The benefit verification letter or award letter confirming the resident is qualified to receive the SSI benefits.

To prove youre eligible based on your income threshold, you must provide a copy of the following:

  • Current employer W-2 or the SSA-1099 form.
  • Paycheck stub for the most recent month
  • Statement of benefits from Unemployment, Social Security, or Workers compensation
Number of people in the household Maximum household income*

What Are The Affordable Connectivity Program Benefits

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ACP provides a discount of up to $30 per month toward internet service for eligible households and up to $75 for those on qualifying Tribal lands, according to the FCC. Those who are eligible can also receive a one-time discount up to $100 for a purchase of a laptop, desktop computer or tablet from participating providers, if they pay more than $10 and less than $50 toward the device.

Only one monthly service discount and one device discount are allowed per household.

Those who qualify for the ACP also qualify for a $30-a-month plan through AT& T, thus making their internet free once the federal benefit is applied.

To get started, households must confirm they are eligible for ACP benefits and get approved. Once approved, call AT& T at 855-220-5211 to set up a plan.

Customers will see their benefits added within one billing cycle, Harris said.

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