City of Chattanooga Internet Service Gains Speed
(TNS) — As EPB’s fiber services engineering manager and one of the utility’s technology professionals, Matt Anderson has been testing EPB’s new Smart Net Plus for nine months.
Even with EPB’s fiber optic connections throughout the city, Anderson found the new Wi-Fi 6 router and Smart Net Plus to be a big plus in both the speed of internet connections for the many home devices in his family and in the controls he acquired by accessing many devices, ranging from smart thermostats to school laptops to streaming TVs.
“We were only using one router for our house, and we definitely saw a real difference and immediately realized how much better the internet was in all the different corners of our house,” Anderson said in an interview. telephone. “Everything just seemed to be a lot more dependent, and as a parent I also really like the parental controls that you can set up on when and what’s accessible on any device and to have the ad blocking features that it provides.”
Anderson is one of EPB’s technology professionals helping EPB consumers use the new Smart Net Plus option, which EPB began offering this fall for a monthly fee of $17.99 per month in plus internet plans that start at $57.99 per month. Customers with 1 gigabit internet plans are eligible for discounted Smart Net Plus at $14.99 per month.
“From doorbells and speakers to TVs and tablets, households need more speed and bandwidth to accommodate the growing number of streaming devices and apps they use,” said Katie Espeseth. , vice president of EPB new products, in an announcement of the new service. “Smart Net Plus adapts to customers’ needs and provides the reliable Wi-Fi service they need and access to cutting-edge technology and service without having to follow costly equipment requirements.”
EPB’s new Wi-Fi 6 network features not only improve Wi-Fi service speed and coverage, but also provide apps for better parental controls, ad-blocking technologies and additional security protections.
Already, around 500 of the 128,000 customers subscribing to some level of EPB Fiber services have ordered the new Smart Net Plus service.
“This takes our internet service to the next level,” EPB Chairman David Wade told the EPB Board on Friday.
Customers can register online at epb.com or speak with the tech pros to learn more at 423-648-1372.
“We tried to make the process very simple and easy,” Anderson said. “Once an installation date is scheduled, we step in, install all the necessary hardware, and take the time to make sure you have good Wi-Fi coverage wherever you need it and that all your devices are connected and working.”
EPB – the city-owned electric utility – expanded into internet, video and telephone services in 2009 when it launched EPB Fiber to help build both a smart grid and its telecommunications services. A year later, EPB helped make Chattanooga “The Gig City” by offering residential internet speeds of 1,000 megabits per second (The Gig) – the fastest citywide internet speeds in the nation.
In 2015, EPB was the first utility to offer citywide 10 gigabit service, and earlier this year EPB again increased its internet speed capacity to 25 gigabytes.
So far, only the Chattanooga Convention Center has signed up for the 25 gigabit service. EPB’s 25 gigabit service is beyond the capacity of most routers, and ISPs elsewhere may not even be able to process that much data that quickly. Initially, EPB will charge residential customers $1,500 per month for the 25 gigabit service and $12,500 per month for business customers.
“We’ve had quite a bit of interest but no other customers yet,” Wade said. “We’ve actually gotten a lot of calls about this from across the country.”
As EPB adds its new Wi-Fi 6 service, the utility is also moving over the next year or two to replace all of its first-generation set-top boxes used for its video service. The EPB TV service, which most EPB Fiber customers once subscribed to, now represents less than 30% of all EPB Fiber customers.
Wade said many video customers have “cut the cord” and switched to streaming video options, although EPB still has around 38,000 customers of its television service, Wade said.
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