BOSTON – Starry, Inc. (the "Company" or "Starry"), a next generation licensed fixed wireless technology developer and internet service provider, today announced it is continuing its participation in the Federal Communications Commission's (FCC) Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) as a qualified provider. The ACP was established by Congress in 2021 through the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The legislation appropriated $14.2 billion to extend the federal Emergency Broadband Benefit program, which was created by Congress in 2020 to assist households struggling to afford the cost of connectivity during the COVID-19 pandemic. The new ACP benefit, which began on December 31, 2021, provides eligible households a subsidy of up to $30 per month (and up to $75 per month for households on qualifying Tribal lands) towards broadband access. Starry was qualified as an EBB provider and will continue to offer the ACP benefit to its Starry Connect communities and other eligible households.
The ACP benefit is limited to one monthly service discount per household and with Starry is available to eligible new, prior and existing customers living in Starry Connect communities. Current and new paying customers in Starry Connect communities can opt-in to the ACP program and Starry will apply the discount directly to the customer’s account. For residents that sign up for Starry’s service and opt-into the ACP program, that benefit can cover the entire cost of broadband service for the household while the program remains in effect. Starry Connect today reaches more than 55,000 units of public and affordable housing in Boston, New York City, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C., Denver and Columbus, OH.
The economic and social benefits of broadband access in the home are well known, yet according to the Federal Communications Commission, millions of Americans still lack access to a high-speed internet broadband connection. Starry launched its Starry Connect program in 2018 to address the growing digital divide by providing an affordable and ultra-low-barrier broadband option to public and affordable housing communities. Starry Connect brings ultra-low-cost broadband service to public and affordable housing residents without requiring credit checks, long-term contracts, individual eligibility requirements (such as household participation in SNAP, WIC or Medicaid) or a lengthy application process. Starry Connect provides a $15 per month option for 30 Mbps symmetrical speeds with all equipment, installation and 24/7 customer support included. There are no data caps for any Starry internet plan. This innovative approach to removing broadband adoption barriers earned Starry designation as a ConnectHomeUSA stakeholder through the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development in 2019.
Starry counts the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA), the Housing Authority of the City of Los Angeles (HACLA), Denver Housing Authority, Cambridge Housing Authority, Boston Housing Authority, Brookline Housing Authority, Innovative Housing Concepts (Englewood CO Housing Authority), and Metro West Housing Solutions (Lakewood CO Housing Authority) as public housing partners. In addition, Starry also works with nonprofit and privately-owned affordable housing owners such as Related Affordable, Spring Creek Towers, Beacon Communities, Schochet Properties, Neighborhood Developers, and many others.
In March 2020, Starry was among the first internet service providers to take the FCC's "Keep Americans Connected" pledge to suspend termination of internet service to customers as a result of non-payment related to COVID-19 and to suspend certain punitive customer practices, such as data caps and additional fees. Starry's internet service has never had additional fees, late fees or data caps as a standard business practice. Starry also committed to providing its Starry Connect service free for all customers during the pledge period and voluntarily extended its pledge commitment through July 31, 2020. To further support its subscribers, in August 2020, the company launched its "Fresh Start" program to wipe away the debt of customers who were unable to pay their broadband subscription fee during the pledge period due to the impacts of COVID-19. Starry's participation in the EBB and ACP is an extension of its customer-first commitment.
Starry Internet is available in Boston, New York City, Los Angeles, Washington, DC, Denver and Columbus, OH, with an expansion roadmap that will cover more than 40 million households across the United States. To learn more about Starry, Starry Connect, or sign-up for Starry service, visit https://starry.com.
Read the full press release here.