C Spire launches next phase of its fiber to the home initiative - WDAM-TV 7-News, Weather, Sports-Hattiesburg, MS

C Spire launches next phase of its fiber to the home initiative: Homeowner Pre-Registration for 100 times faster internet

This is a news release from C Spire

C Spire's initiative to bring ultra-fast 1 Gbps fiber to the home Internet service to Hattiesburg and eight other Mississippi cities has shifted into high gear with the launch of customized web pages that allow thousands of residents in the finalist cities to pre-register for the next generation technology.

The company launched the pre-registration phase on December 4 for the nation's first and only statewide roll out of the 1 Gig service, which promises Internet access up to 100 times faster than national average broadband speeds for residents in each of the nine Mississippi cities in the initial phase.  These cities and towns were among 33 municipalities that submitted formal applications in late October to be the first to bring the technology of tomorrow to their communities today.

Residents in Hattiesburg, Batesville, Clinton, Corinth, Horn Lake, McComb, Quitman, Ridgeland and Starkville can now pre-register for the ultra-fast Internet as well as related digital television and home phone services.  All nine cities approved franchise agreements with C Spire to pave the way for the start of the pre-registration phase.

Individuals will need to make a $10 refundable deposit and provide credit card information when they pre-register on their respective site.  The web page for each city also features detailed, interactive maps of fiber hoods showing what percentage of residents need to pre-register to turn the area "green" and qualify for build out of the service.  

There are also progress bars for each fiber hood that will be updated daily to help residents get a "real time" snapshot of their success in getting neighbors, friends and others who live nearby to pre-register for the service.  Registration percentage goals for Hattiesburg's 13 fiber hoods vary between 35 and 45 percent.

 "As soon as a critical number of neighborhoods have reached their percentage goals in a fiber hood,

C Spire plans to begin construction – so there is a possibility that work could commence in more than one community at the same time." said Gregg Logan, senior vice president of C Spire Fiber.

The 1 Gbps Internet access will be available for $80 a month, $100 a month for combined Internet and home phone, $140 a month for Internet and digital TV and $160 a month for the entire package of all three services.   C Spire Wireless customers will receive an additional $10 monthly discount on all packages.

Hattiesburg Mayor Johnny DuPree said the breakthrough technology will boost the city's prospects now and in the future.  "Technology is the gateway to better education, financial stability and overall quality of life," DuPree said.  "Hattiesburg is known internationally as a pioneer in emerging technology - so this represents a tremendous opportunity for this community. We search daily for opportunities to invest in Mississippi companies."

C Spire officials said the finalist cities are entering a critical stage of the initiative where local residents and homeowners will determine where the game-changing services go first.  "There's a tremendous amount of excitement in each of these communities and a strong desire to be among the first to receive the 1 Gig Internet service to the home," said Hu Meena, president and CEO of C Spire.  "We're looking forward to bringing tomorrow's technology to Hattiesburg and these other Mississippi communities today because we know that this service has the power to transform communities into hubs for technology investment and economic growth." 

To help the cities better prepare for the next phase of the "Get Fiber First" Challenge, C Spire staff participated in a series of town hall meetings in late November with government, community and business leaders who are rallying their respective towns to quickly pre-register homeowners in designated "fiber hoods" at percentage levels that will qualify them to be among the first to receive the services.

Company representatives shared details on plans, pricing, service package options, the pre-registration process and the economic and social benefits from the next-generation technology with hundreds of interested homeowners at town hall meetings in all nine cities.

The finalist cities were selected last month by a C Spire review panel that considered factors like proximity to the company's fiber optic infrastructure, community mobilization capabilities and incentives to speed up the construction process and reduce overall costs.  The application review process was monitored and the Individual and overall results tabulated by Ridgeland-based Horne LLP, one of the nation's top independent public accounting and business advisory firms.

To pre-register for 1 Gig service in Hattiesburg, go to www.cspire.com/hattiesburg.  To learn more about C Spire's Fiber to the Home initiative, visit www.cspire.com/fiberhome.    

Copyright 2013 WDAM. All rights reserved.

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