With more than 2 million strand miles of fiber optics stretching across our footprint in Alabama, AT&T’s network is delivering the high-speed services that residents and businesses throughout Alabama are demanding. Our commitment to urban and rural communities across the state is clear, and through our combination of wired and wireless services, no one connects more Alabamans than AT&T.
Despite the many billions of dollars that AT&T has invested in Alabama over the years (more than $1.2 billion from 2015 to 2017 alone), we recognize that some work remains to be done to connect rural areas, and we are hard at work every day to close those remaining gaps. To that end, I would like to share exciting progress with Project AirGig, a version of which was first trialed in the U.S. in rural Georgia, and AT&T Fixed Wireless Internet (FWI).
Project AirGig is part of AT&T’s ongoing effort to accelerate internet connections to a gig or more for all communities through both wired and wireless solutions. AirGig technology represents over a decade of research by AT&T Labs and more than 500 patents and patent applications. It also represents a potential new era in connectivity where turbocharged data speeds can be available almost everywhere in the world.
Project AirGig is a first-of-its-kind technology that could one day deliver internet speeds well over 1 gigabit per second via a millimeter wave (mmWave) signal, guided by powerlines. We are proud to be on the cusp of a technology that could potentially help solve the digital divide in Alabama and across this country, deploying in many areas not served by high-speed broadband today.
In order to take the next step towards deployment, we have initiated discussions with technology suppliers to start testing and building commercial-grade Project AirGig equipment. We are also exploring another field trial in which we'll focus on aspects of surface-wave systems, which could provide an important ingredient in a future 5G world.
"In today’s digital economy, access to reliable broadband service is critical. My colleagues and I are working hard to create an environment that supports private investment and enhanced broadband access for all Alabamians. I applaud AT&T’s continued investment and am pleased Fixed Wireless Internet is now available in parts of 39 Alabama counties,” said U.S. Congressman Robert Aderholt. “With the use of multiple technologies across Alabama, we will close the access gaps that exist in some of our rural communities.”
These are important next steps to scale Project AirGig and bring this technology to many more people and businesses in Alabama and across the country.
Additionally, we are excited to provide an update on the availability of AT&T Fixed Wireless Internet in rural and underserved locations in parts of 39 Alabama counties.
"AT&T’s Fixed Wireless Internet (FWI) is offering my family more options in our everyday lives, at an affordable price,” said Shannon Ary, AT&T Fixed Wireless customer. “With FWI, my husband and I can now work from home, which is life-changing, and our children have increased access to educational tools at home, not to mention videos and gaming with friends. We are excited to have access to this innovative technology and pleased AT&T continues to enhance high-speed connectivity in Arkadelphia and other rural communities across Alabama.”
Our FWI is a cost-effective way to deploy high-quality, high-speed internet to customers living in rural and hard to reach locations. This service delivers an internet connection with download speeds of 10Mbps or faster from a wireless tower to a fixed antenna on a customers’ home or business in the FCC-identified census blocks. In Alabama, AT&T plans to reach nearly 67,000 locations by 2020.
Parts of the following 39 counties in Alabama are now eligible for AT&T Fixed Wireless Internet service: Autauga, Baldwin, Barbour, Bibb, Blount, Butler, Calhoun, Chambers, Chilton, Colbert, Coosa, Cullman, Dallas, Elmore, Escambia, Fayette, Franklin, Greene, Hale, Jefferson, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Lee, Limestone, Lowndes, Macon, Marengo, Mobile, Montgomery, Morgan, Russell, Shelby, Sumter, Talladega, Tallapoosa, Tuscaloosa, Walker, Washington and Winston.
AT&T has a long history of connecting people with their world and is proud to be on the cutting edge of innovation, with Project AirGig and FWI. The thousands of AT&T employees who call Alabama home work hard each and every day to deliver and enhance broadband access in our communities — urban and rural.
It’s an exciting time to work in the communications technology industry. Thank you for what you do every day to make our work in Alabama a success, for our customers and our state.
President — AT&T Alabama
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