Internet access and online resources for students and colleges

March 17, 2020

As schools and colleges move their instruction and support services online during the virus crisis, internet service providers are increasing access, and new resources are becoming available for educators.

For information about internet service changes (from AT&T, Comcast, Verizon, Sprint, T Mobile/Metro by T Mobile, and Charter Spectrum), please scroll to the end of the post. 

Here are resources for individuals:

Here are resources for faculty, staff, and administrators moving operations online (most geared specifically for California community colleges, newest at top):

Here’s how internet providers are expanding access (at least through mid-May):

AT&T is offering unlimited data access; opening its public WiFi hotpots; serving all residential and small business customers for 60 days even if they can’t pay; and waiving late fees. It also offers low-income customers internet access with no data limit; click here for details.

Comcast is opening its free Xfinity WiFi network and providing unlimited data there (find a map of hot spots here). And it is pausing plan limits for 60 days; waiving late fees and disconnections, and providing basic broadband for free to all new customers. Click here for details.

Verizon also is suspending account terminations for residential and small business customers and waiving late fees. And it is tripling data allowances for schools. Click here for details.

Charter Spectrum is offering free broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days (no installation fee) to households with K-12 or college students who don’t have a Spectrum subscription (call 1-844-488-8395 to enroll). And it is opening WiFi hotspots. Click here for details.

Sprint won’t terminate service if customers are unable to pay due to coronavirus issues; it is waiving related late fees; and it is offering free international calling from the U.S. to countries defined by the CDC as “Level 3.” It will provide unlimited data plus 20GB of mobile hotspot to existing customers at no extra cost for 60 days. Click here for details.

T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile is providing all customers unlimited smartphone data, excluding roaming. An additional 20GB of mobile hotspots/tethering for 60 days will start soon. And it is increasing data allowances for schools and students to at least 20GB of data per month per student for 60 days. Click here for details.

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