Broadband Internet Service
The term broadband commonly refers to high-speed internet access that is always on and faster than the traditional dial-up access. Broadband includes several high-speed transmission technologies such as:
- Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
- Cable Modem
- Broadband over Powerlines (BPL)
For more details on different types of broadband connections, please visit the FCC website.
Stay Connected with Lifeline and Affordable Connectivity Programs - A fact sheet explaining telephone assistance programs.
Affordable Broadband Help
Affordable Connectivity Program for PA Consumers - Spanish Version - Factsheet explaining the FCC's Affordable Connectivity Program, which expands and makes permanent the temporary Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) program created in response to COVID-19 as the funding source to provide discounts on broadband for income-eligible households.
FCC's Notice of the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program - As of May 12, 2021, eligible households will be able to enroll in the Program to receive a monthly discount off the cost of broadband service from an approved provider. Eligible households can enroll through an approved provider or by visiting https://getemergencybroadband.org.
Emergency Broadband Benefit Q&A Webinar
What: Emergency Broadband Benefit - Q&A with the FCC - A webinar hosted by Penn State Extension
When: Wednesday, May 19, 2021
Watch: Recording of Webinar
Pennsylvania Broadband Map
Pennsylvania Broadband Map - The Penn State Extension, in consultation with the PUC, created an interactive map to help internet service providers as they prepare to bid on projects to expand broadband services to unserved regions in the state. This map represents FCC data in terms of broadband service for the purpose of enabling bidders to better estimate their project costs in providing service to locations not having broadband services as defined by the FCC.
Pennsylvania Broadband Map by County and 500 Public School Districts - This map is presented by regions. This map shows all areas without broadband in Pennsylvania. This includes the areas without broadband in Pennsylvania that not included in Auction 904 Map because those areas are not in the auction as explained herein.
FCC’s Keep Americans Connected Pledge – Like the Commission in its Emergency Order, the FCC wants to ensure Americans do not lose their broadband or telephone connectivity as of result of the COVID-19 pandemic. So far more than 400 companies and associations have signed the pledge to Keep Americans Connected.
Some carriers are doing more than the FCC pledge to Keep America Connected. Questions about your broadband service should be directed to your service provider.
Contact your telephone company or a participating wireless services provider about Lifeline, a federal financial support program that helps eligible low-income consumers and households to keep their telephone and internet access. More information on Lifeline is available at www.lifelinesupport.org. You can also call Lifeline at 1-800-234-9473 between 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., seven days a week. The Commission has additional information on its Communications Assistance Programs page.
Stay Connected with Lifeline - A brochure explaining telephone assistance programs. Updated September 2022. Keep America Connected. Questions about your broadband service should be directed to your service provider.
Chapter 30 Regulations
Broadband Bill of Rights - Under Pennsylvania law, residents have a right to broadband access.
PUC Chapter 30 regulations require companies to make broadband/Internet service available within 10 business days of a request at a speed equal to or grater than 1.544 megabits per second (mbps) in the downstream direction and equal to or greater than 128 kilobits per second (kbps) in the upstream direction.
A telephone company is permitted to meet its broadband obligation by using either its own facilities or the facilities of an affiliated company through any kind of technology.
Contact a telephone company of your choice to request broadband/internet service.
Lifeline Assistance for Broadband/Internet Service for Low-Income Consumers
Lifeline helps make communications services more affordable for low-income consumers. Starting on December 2, 2016, Lifeline support is available to help low-income Pennsylvanians obtain Internet access. Discounts will apply to stand-alone broadband, bundled voice-broadband packages—either fixed or mobile—and stand-alone voice service. As a Lifeline customer, you are automatically eligible to receive broadband service through your current telephone carrier. You may receive a discount for your landline, wireless or broadband service, but only ONE discount is available per household.
For further information on how to apply for Lifeline, please visit the Lifeline Program page.
Questions regarding Lifeline Broadband/Internet service? Call the PUC's Consumer Hotline at 1-800-692-7380.
Department of Community & Economic Development
The Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) has information on its website explaining about the Broadband Initiative in Pennsylvania.
It is indisputable that a successful telecommunications infrastructure is vital in the 21st century. With an expansive and established broadband service, Pennsylvania will be even more attractive to businesses; and, a wide-reaching broadband network will help schools to provide a more interactive learning environment in order to bridge the digital divide.
Increased telecommunication through broadband has many implications - some of which haven't even been discovered yet.
Participating Broadband Service Providers - DCED's website provides a comprehensive list of broadband providers in Pennsylvania.
- Damage Prevention Committee
- Broadband Internet Service
- Telephone Tips
- PA Universal Service Fund
- Monthly Remittance and Annual Reporting by Telcos
- Local Service Abandonment Notification
- Local Service Migration
- Application to Provide Telecomm Services
- FCC Order Implementation
- Area Codes
- Telecommunications Relay Service
- 911 Service
- Pole Attachments
- Telephone Companies & Contacts
- Telecommunications Glossary
- Interconnection Agreements
- Carrier Working Group
- Biennial NMP Progress Report Forms
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