Comcast Corporation, the nation’s largest cable television provider, will soon begin a cut rate monthly program for Internet service aimed at low-income families with children. About 150,000 children in Philadelphia could be eligible for the program, “Internet Essentials,” at al cost of $9.95 per month instead of the standard $49 fee for broadband service—an 80 percent discount.
Mayor Michael Nutter and Comcast CEO Ralph Roberts are scheduled to announce the Internet Essentials program next Tuesday, the first day of school.
Comcast’s commitment to create Internet access for low-income families grows out of the recent deal the giant cable television promised when its bid to buy NBC Universal was approved by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).
According to Comcast executives, the Internet Essentials will gradually be available to nearly 3 million pupils nationwide.
In addition to the Internet hook-up, qualifying students will also be given vouchers worth $150 to obtain laptop computers from Dell or Acer, two participating PC manufacturers. Comcast also said it will not charge activation or modem fees with Internet Essentials or require participants to sign a contract. The $9.95 fee monthly charge will be frozen for the duration of the project.
For more information Internet Essentials, English speakers can call 1-855-846-8376 and Spanish speakers, 1-855-765-6995.