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Intel Joins Forces to Increase Home Broadband Adoption in U.S.

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margie-dickmanBy Margie Dickman, Senior Policy Counsel at Intel

Intel has joined forces with non-profits, leading tech companies, and broadband service providers to form the Digital Adoption Coalition, which will focus on increasing broadband adoption among low-income households across the country.

According to National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) data, 95 percent of U.S. households have access to a broadband network, but only 65 percent of those households subscribe to broadband service.

This substantial broadband adoption gap disproportionately affects low-income and minority households. Non-adopters cite a variety of reasons for this digital divide including cost/affordability, digital literacy barriers, and lack of relevance to their lives.

In its recently released National Broadband Plan, the FCC recommended that NTIA “consider supporting public-private partnerships of hardware manufacturers, software companies, broadband service providers and digital literacy training partners to improve broadband adoption and utilization by working with federal agencies already serving non-adopting communities. Congress should consider providing additional public funds, or NTIA should use existing funds to support these partnerships.”

The Digital Adoption Coalition – in a broadband stimulus application submitted by non-profit One Economy on March 15 – proposed such a public-private partnership initiative to enable broadband adoption by HUD households. Specifically, the initiative would provide digital literacy education and help these low-income households purchase a new broadband-enabled computer, bundled with discounted broadband service.

Intel’s C.J. Bruno, Vice President, Sales and Marketing Group and President, Intel Americas, Inc. stated: “We are proud to be part of this initiative to offer HUD residents affordable Internet access and PC ownership, bolstered by hands-on training. Intel believes that consumer-focused initiatives like this are critical to achieving the FCC’s goal of 90 percent home broadband adoption by 2020.”

If awarded funding, the Digital Adoption Coalition expects to make approximately 250,000 new broadband-enabled computers and broadband subscriptions affordable for HUD-subsidized households across the U.S., accompanied by digital literacy training in local communities – with the goal of enabling hundreds of thousands of new home broadband users over the next few years.

Here is the Digital Adoption Coalition’s press release: Digital Adoption Coalition_PR_Final.mht

About the Author
Global Director & Managing Counsel, Internet of Things Policy