The Emergency Broadband Benefit Program helps low to moderate income families pay for both their high speed internet connections and it also gives financial assistance to pay for laptops, tablets, smart phones, or other connectivity devices. The EBB program provides free or affordable internet access to qualified households. The goal of the program is to help students get internet access for school or work. In addition to the help from the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program, most cable and phone companies also provide additional assistance. If you want to learn more about how to apply for EBB, click on the link below.
Internet access is not currently considered a public utility in the United States, but there have been calls from some legislators and commentators for it to be either free or very affordable. Aside from being a great way to exercise free speech, many people also rely on it to help them get through their day-to-day lives, whether for work, school, or other purposes. The Emergency Broadband Benefit Program was created to help people get internet access and pay their high-speed internet bills. The program will also help them pay for devices ranging from computers to laptops or Chromebooks.
Online services make it possible to pay bills, book affordable transportation, search and apply for jobs, and manage small businesses. People of all ages can take online classes. This means that the bus schedule and traffic flow are constantly being monitored and updated in real time, and that classes are being taken and coupons for food and other essentials are being found.
The FCC is working to make sure everyone has access to the internet by providing low-income households with high-speed internet as part of the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program. This program will help those in need to get a computer, smartphone or tablet.
The Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB): Help With Getting (And Staying) Online
The FCC’s Emergency Broadband Benefit has two components: one for those looking to buy a device to get on the internet with, and one for those looking for help paying a monthly internet bill. If you are an eligible American, you could potentially get both of these benefits, which could include free devices or free internet service.
The first part of the program is a discount of up to $100 on a computer, tablet, Chromebook, laptop or phone when bought from one of the program’s partners. The only other thing you need to do to get the device is to put $10 to $50 of your own money toward it, if you qualify based on income. You can only buy things that cost $150 or less. Put the $150 from the Emergency Broadband Benefit towards a more expensive device.
There is a wide selection of Android phones and tablets that are affordable, but it will be more difficult to find a computer within that price range. A Chromebook that is less expensive might be around $150, or a used laptop might be an option if any companies offer them. Only one device can be bought for each household.
The government’s EBB broadband benefit program will likely have a second component that will help households struggling to keep their internet connection. This means that you can get a discount of $50 per month on broadband internet service if you live on tribal lands. The Emergency Broadband Benefit provides funds to help pay for internet service during the COVID-19 pandemic. This benefit can be used to pay for cable internet service, wireless connections, satellite or other connectivity.
Who Is Eligible for the Emergency Broadband Benefit?
The FCC is making it easy to qualify for the free government internet assistance program. If you are enrolled in other government programs that provide help, you are automatically eligible for this program. -Families who rely on government assistance for food, housing, disability benefits, or cash aid will automatically qualify for financial help from the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program. You will still need to contact your current internet provider, or find a new one who operates in your local community. There are other ways to qualify too.
Some companies that provide internet service and cable are also running their own low-income assistance programs. Some of these programs provide special assistance during the Covid-19 pandemic. If you are a part of one of these programs, you may also be qualified for FCC assistance.
The third option is for people who have had a big drop in their income because of the Covid-19 pandemic. This means that if your income is lower than $99,000 for single filers or $198,000 for joint filers and you have lost some income since February 29, 2020, you may qualify for this aid without being part of any other assistance programs.
There are certain federal programs that, if you participate in them, will automatically qualify you for assistance from the FCC. The main program is the Lifeline program, which gives a small monthly discount for wired or wireless phone service. The Emergency Broadband Benefit is a program that provides discounts on internet access to low-income households. State-specific programs exist to help with telephone bill payments.
In order to qualify for the Lifeline program, your income must be at or below 135% of the current federal poverty line. Alternatively, you may be enrolled in another federal assistance program, such as SNAP, Medicaid, Federal Public Housing Assistance, Supplemental Security Income, the Veterans and Survivors Pension Benefit, or certain Tribal Programs.
You don’t need to be on Lifeline to get this benefit. If you have participated in free and reduced-price school breakfast or lunch programs since the 2019-2020 school year, or have received a Federal Pell Grant during the current academic year, you may qualify for this program.
How Do You Get Into the Program?
Contact your local or national phone, cable, or satellite TV provider to see if you qualify for financial assistance from the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program. The FCC is looking for partners to help provide discounted internet service and devices. It seems like you will buy your device or service from these local providers, and the FCC will give you a discount on the purchase.
The agency has a list of its current partners on the website and it appears that you can expect around 10 to 30 partners per state that offer this free broadband benefit to low income households. This means that most of the major cable and wireless providers offer this service.
The group PCs For People appears to be providing computers to many states and territories through the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) Program. The group offers some laptops or desktops that have been slightly repaired and upgraded, and they are all under $100. You can order computers online from them, but the local retail stores usually have a wider selection.
The price of broadband internet service can be very different depending on where you live. It can cost anywhere from $35 to $100 a month. The average monthly internet bill in the US is about $61, so the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program from the FCC is likely to either provide free internet, or a bill for only a few dollars a month. This is a big help to those people who are struggling to keep up with their bills, but who need internet access for vital services and finding sources of income.