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Comcast’s public WiFi hotspots will remain free for the rest of 2020

2020-06-22 18:18 by
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Comcast on Friday said it's extending free access to its 1.5 million public Xfinity Wi-Fi hotspots to everyone, including people who aren't customers, for the rest of the year. This follows a Thursday update in which the company said it was extending its free Internet Essentials offer, which provides 60 days of internet service to low-income households with students, for the remainder of 2020.

"We saw a huge jump in usage after we opened up our public hotspots, and we're excited to keep them open through the end of the year as the nation begins taking steps to reopen," Dana Strong, president of Xfinity Consumer Services, said in a statement.

Comcast was one of several broadband internet providers to commit to the Federal Communications Commission's Keep Americans Connected pledge back in March, as the coronavirus kept people homebound and reliant on internet connections for working and schooling remotely. The ISPs promised not to terminate services for residences or small businesses that were unable to pay their bills because of the pandemic, and to waive late fees. The pledge also included a provision to open Wi-Fi hotspots to "any American who needs them."

According to Comcast, hundreds of thousands of non-Xfinity customers have taken advantage of the free hotspots. Last month, Senators Cory Booker, Kamala Harris and Ron Wyden urged Comcast to make all of its WiFi hotspots (including Xfinity customers' routers) open to students who don't have internet access at home. In response to Report Door's inquiry at that time, Comcast pointed to its other programs meant to keep people connected.

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