Verizon is adding its 5G Home and LTE Home fixed wireless access (FWA) services to its Verizon Forward Program, an effort it launched last spring to provide customers that qualify for the Affordable Connectivity Act (ACP) with access to free home internet without data caps or equipment fees.
Verizon’s free internet program originally was called Fios Forward and provided qualified ACP customers with free access to Verizon Fios’ fiber network. Now it’s extending that offer to customers nationwide via its LTE and 5G wireless network instead of limiting it to just those within its Fios’ fiber footprint.
Verizon’s FWA broadband subscriber numbers are growing at a steady pace. In the second quarter the company added 168,000 net adds in its consumer segment and 88,000 net adds in the business segment.
The company typically charges customers with a qualifying mobile plan and autopay $50 per month for its 5G Home FWA service and $70 per month for those without a mobile plan. The company’s LTE-based FWA service starts at $25 per month with a qualifying mobile plan and autopay.
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) launched the ACP program in January to replace what was previously called the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) program and the agency is providing more than $14 billion in support of these services.
The ACP provides qualifying households with a $30 per month discount on their broadband or a $75 per month discount for those residing on tribal lands. It also provides a one-time discount of up to $100 on the purchase of a laptop, desktop computer or tablet.
ACP eligibility is determined by the FCC and verified by the Universal Service Administrative Co. Verizon said that both new and existing Verizon customers can qualify for the service if they were enrolled as an EBB or Lifeline customer, or if they participate in other federal assistance programs, or have a household income that is at or below 200% of the federal poverty level.