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Spot On Networks Turns On Wireless Network For Residents In Block E of Queensbridge Houses

Spot On Networks turns on Queensbridge Connected WiFi in Block E at Queensbridge Houses in Long Island City, NY in partnership with the New York City Housing Authority

For Immediate Release

New Haven, CT February 8, 2017

Spot On Networks (“SON”) has turned on Queensbridge Connected, the community wide WiFi network that is being deployed throughout Queensbridge Houses in partnership with the New York City Housing Authority. The Queensbridge Connected Network is backed by Spot On’s patented UserSafe® technology which guards users against hacking, spoofing and identity theft.  The first phase of the Queensbridge Connected WiFi Network was turned on in mid-December in Block F.  Since the network was turned on, Block F sees over 2,300 unique client devices per week and is passing over 5.2 terabytes of data per week.

Once completed, the Queensbridge Connected WiFi Network will be the largest affordable housing, community-wide WiFi network in the United States with high speed WiFi access being available for all residents across 26 clusters of 95 buildings in two adjacent complexes.  The Spot On Networks Team is currently in the process of building out and testing the remaining blocks.

SON has opened an on-site customer care center for residents and support at Queensbridge Houses, 10-35 41st. Ave. Long Island City, NY.  In addition to SON’s 24/7 Customer Support, residents have the option of receiving in-person support at Queensbridge Houses.  SON is currently employing both full-time and part-time Queensbridge residents as part of their staff and has committed to creating more jobs and hiring from within the Queensbridge community.  Employment opportunities for Queensbridge residents include positions in marketing, management and networking.

Dick Sherwin, Wireless Hall of Fame inductee and CEO of Spot On Networks said, “We are extremely pleased with the level of service that we are providing to Queensbridge residents.  The positive feedback we have received from residents and the surrounding community has been overwhelming.”, he went on to say, “We are thrilled to be the WiFi provider for Queensbridge Houses and are committed to providing an extraordinary service to Queensbridge residents as well as opportunities to those looking for employment.”

The Queensbridge Connected WiFi Network offers speeds up to 25 Mbps, unlimited data usage, WiFi calling capability, seamless roaming and 24/7 customer support, providing Queensbridge residents connectivity and access to educational and employment resources.

 

About Queensbridge Houses

Queensbridge is the largest public housing development in North America with 3,149 units and an estimated 7,000 residents across 26 clusters of 95 buildings in two adjacent complexes. The contract is to provide wireless internet speeds of up to 25 Mbps to each household as well as network monitoring and management with a 24/7 help desk for Queensbridge residents and staff. The Queensbridge WiFi Network will include high speed wireless internet for laptops, smartphones and tablets, WiFi calling capability with Quality of Service and integration for the Internet of Things. The Queensbridge WiFi Network will allow many residents to save money on comprehensive data services while having access to WiFi calling using their smartphones, thus comporting with the Federal Communications Commission’s Lifeline Report and Order of April 27, 2016 bridging the digital divide.

About Spot On Networks, LLC

Spot On Networks is the largest Wireless Internet Service Provider to the multifamily industry. In addition to offering its UserSafe® managed WiFi services to the multifamily, hospitality and commercial industries, Spot On Networks has a range of wireless services including CellBoost®, a cell coverage enhancement service, and WiFiPlus+®, its wireless backbone integrated with energy management, building automation and security monitoring. www.spotonnetworks.com

 

Telcos Opt-Out Of FCC Lifeline Broadband – Affordable Housing

A majority of major telecommunications companies are opting out of the FCC Lifeline Broadband subsidy program and public advocacy groups are not happy about it.

In order to be designated for the Lifeline Broadband subsidy,  a provider has to apply, offer certain levels of service and support as well as be able to remain functional in emergency situations.  The FCC released the first report and order designating four Lifeline Broadband providers, including Spot On Networks who is offering community-wide high speed WiFi access throughout Queensbridge Houses in Long Island City which is the largest affordable housing complex in the United States.

Major telcos have neglected to apply for Lifeline Broadband designation.  Fortune magazine stated on Friday that Frontier, Century Link and AT&T had filed to opt out of the subsidy while Verizon “sought forbearance from the requirement except where it offers Fios Internet service”.

The move by the majority of major telcos have many human rights advocates very unhappy about their lack of participation in the Lifeline program which would have huge impacts on low-income housing.   According to Fortune, “only about one-third of the 40 million households that are eligible for the Lifeline program lack broadband”.  Both the FCC and public advocacy groups hope that improving connectivity in low-income housing housing will contribute to better access to resources for school work, employment searches and applications and other tasks.

Some of the advocacy groups that criticized AT&Ts lack of participation include the National Hispanic Media Coalition, The United Church of Christ, The National Consumer Law Center, The Benton Foundation and others.  Fortune quotes Jessica Gonzales, general counsel at the National Hispanic Media Coalition’s statement:

“Lifeline is an historic initiative that will help connect millions of Americans to the home and mobile broadband that could serve as their pathway out of poverty with access to greater educational and economic opportunities… AT&T’s decision to opt out of obligations sets a dangerous precedent for other carriers who may also choose to neglect low-income customers.”

AT&T responded to criticism by saying that they offer their own low-cost services program to qualifying customers, however the service has requirements including an online application, necessary participation in SNAP and a credit check which can pose barriers for certain consumers. AT&T also complains that the subsidy is not enough to cover broadband in urban areas.

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