broadband

A screenshot of the map related to the Center for Rural Pennsylvania broadband study shows only some fractions of the state meet the FCC definition of broadband internet downloading speed.
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A new report released on Monday by the Center for Rural Pennsylvania says the Federal Communications Commission overstates broadband internet availability and access across Pennsylvania.

Panelists discussed potential solutions to the rural broadband crisis as a part of the Influencers Project hosted by the Centre Daily Times at the State Theatre on April 24, 2019.
Min Xian / WPSU

A variety of potential solutions exist to address the widespread lack of broadband internet access, such as community cooperatives and “white space” technology, which delivers internet similar to that of 4G, according to 14 panelists who participated in discussions of the rural broadband crisis on Wednesday. The “Influencers Project” was hosted by the Centre Daily Times at the State Theatre in downtown State College.

In this file photo, Tony Pouliot demonstrates the goCrop app on his mobile photo in the cab of his combine on his farm in Westford, Vt.
Toby Talbot / AP

A group representing rural Pennsylvanians says expanding high speed broadband internet access in the state needs to be a priority this year, but acknowledges funding for infrastructure upgrades continues to be a challenge.

 

 

The most recent federal spending bill passed in March 2018 included a $600 million boost to efforts to improve high-speed internet access.

 

 

A screenshot of the Penn State study's live result map shows that only a fraction of the state meets the F.C.C.'s standard for high-speed broadband internet.
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Statewide research from Pennsylvania State University finds that there’s a severe lack of connectivity to high-speed broadband internet for much of Pennsylvania. The preliminary results of the study suggest that the problem is far worse than experts initially estimated.

Using data self-reported from internet providers, the Federal Communications Commission estimates about 800,000 Pennsylvanians lack access to broadband, which is about six percent of the state’s population.

In his office on Penn State’s main campus, Sascha Meinrath, a professor of telecommunications, tested his internet speed.
Min Xian / Keystone Crossroads

In his office on Penn State’s main campus, Sascha Meinrath, a professor of telecommunications, tested his internet speed.

With an upload speed of 200 megabits and a download speed of 80 megabits per second, it blew past the federal definition of broadband.

“That’s way over the FCC definition,” said Meinrath.

But many in Pennsylvania aren’t so lucky.

The Center for Rural Pennsylvania hosted a public hearing in Tioga County on Thursday, hearing from providers and consumers about the lack of broadband access in rural areas.
Min Xian / WPSU

Dr. Robert Gillio is in charge of telemedicine at J.C. Blair Hospital in Huntingdon county.

But he has no internet access at home.

“I can’t get Comcast at my house, two miles from the hospital,” Gillio said. “I want to log in at home and help? I got to drive to the damn hospital to log in to help my patient with telemedicine.”