This is Not Your Grandpa’s WiFi
Microsoft announced plans to connect more than two million people to quality internet access in rural America.
The technology giant has conjured an innovative technique, which will use television channels not currently owned by networks and broadcasters in rural areas. Using this ‘white space’ is novel, inventive and has never been previously attempted.
The Microsoft gurus may have pioneered a method for all future internet access endeavors as TV signals can penetrate walls, buildings and other structures in ways cellular WiFi cannot.
Coined the Rural Airband Initiative, the first 12 states to see effects at launch are: Arizona, Georgia, Kansas, Maine, Michigan, New York, North Dakota, South Dakota, Texas, Virginia, Washington, and Wisconsin.
Your move, Apple
For more information, please visit npr.org
Why You Should Care
Remember when dial-up internet screeched its way through your desktop computer? In rural communities, this is still a reality.
The small-town-America education system, in many cases, lacks adequate classroom sizes or faculty to offer AP classes, which isolates many advanced children from the challenging environments needed to fuel their full academic potential. One solution is to offer online dual credit coursework through partnered universities; however, without high-speed internet access, homework, tests and other login attendance requirements become non-starters. And, again, these students are left in the dark.
With access to high-speed internet, healthcare becomes easily accessible for animals and humans. US News reports approximately 48 rural hospitals have closed with another 283 in trouble.
For towns like my hometown, Girard, Texas, the closest hospital is a heart-stopping 32 minutes away. The closest veterinary clinic is 11 miles away, with phone services reported as “24/7…. will return your call as soon as possible.” For the lives and livelihoods of families like mine in rural America, internet access could reduce the mortality rate in both humans and livestock as they wait patiently for emergency services to find their way down the correct county road, using limited cell reception to guide them
Knowledge is power and with the internet, comes access to that knowledge. Let us know what your thoughts are.