C Spire has begun the next stage of building out its statewide fiber to the home (FTTH) network, naming nine Mississippi city and town finalists that will get the 1 Gbps-capable service.
The communities that will participate in the initial phase of the broadband build are Batesville, Clinton, Corinth, Hattiesburg, Horn Lake, McComb, Quitman, Ridgeland and Starkville.
These nine cities and towns were chosen out of a list of 33 municipalities that submitted applications in October for its "Get Fiber First Challenge."
This initiative began in September when it announced a statewide program to provide 1 Gbps FTTH Internet services in the cities and towns that it said "best showcase their passion for securing service that's 100 times faster than national average broadband speeds."
It added that it decided to "increase the number of partner communities to nine during the first phase of the initiative."
Finalists were announced during a news conference at C Spire headquarters with Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant, a host of state and local elected officials and representatives from the FTTH Council Americas. During the event, Bryant presented a proclamation declaring Monday, Nov. 4 as "Get Fiber First" and "Gimme Fiber" day in Mississippi.
Taking a cue from Google Fiber (Nasdaq: GOOG) and other municipal FTTH providers that offer a 1 Gbps service such as Chattanooga's EPB Fiber, pricing for C Spire's service is competitive.
Eligible customers will be able to purchase the 1 Gbps Internet access service for $80 a month, while a combined Internet and home phone package will cost $100 a month. They will also offer an Internet and digital TV bundle for $140 a month and $160 a month for customers that want a voice, video and data triple play bundle. Existing C Spire Wireless customers will get an additional $10 monthly discount on all packages.
Similar to Google Fiber, homeowners in each community will be invited to pre-register for service. It said that when a "critical number of neighborhoods have reached their percentage goals in an individual city, C Spire plans to begin construction in those areas."
- see the release
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