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AT&T Bringing Broadband to Nearly 133,000 Rural Homes and Businesses in Mississippi

Jackson, MS -- AT&T is committed to widespread broadband deployment, including serving those who live and work in hard-to-reach and remote areas.

Even with the latest technology, in some areas, broadband deployment is not economically viable. To address that problem, in late 2011, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) modernized its Universal Service program to support networks capable of providing broadband and voice services. It created the Connect America Fund (CAF) to expand broadband in rural areas where market forces and economics do not support expansion.

AT&T has elected to participate in the second phase of the CAF program in Mississippi, committing to deploy broadband to more than 133,000 rural homes and businesses. Created by the FCC, the CAF program promotes broadband deployment in high-cost, underserved parts of the United States. AT&T Mississippi will receive almost $50 million annually, for the coming six years, to help meet the CAF commitment in the Magnolia State.

"AT&T Mississippi has been participating in the FCC's universal service program since 2000," stated Mayo Flynt, President of AT&T Mississippi. "The new CAF II funds, combined with AT&T's latest technology, will help us significantly close the broadband Internet access gap in our state. It's very exciting."

"AT&T's continued commitment to Mississippi has increased new business opportunities and offered better access to education and health care in our communities," U.S. Senator Roger Wicker said. "In rural Mississippi, advancing telehealth is important to the well-being of our citizens. Enhanced connectivity would help ensure that our innovative medical community can continue to expand the delivery of solutions and real-time interactions with rural patients, hospitals, and clinics."

In these new deployment areas, AT&T will deliver broadband at speeds of at least 10 Megabits per second (Mbps) for downloads and 1 Mbps for uploads, consistent with the FCC's determination.

"Over half of Mississippians live in rural areas, and our state has the lowest ratio of physicians to patients in the nation. Therefore, telemedicine is a vital tool in delivering quality, affordable health care to rural Mississippi," stated Dr. Kristi Henderson, Chief Telehealth and Innovation Officer for the University of Mississippi Medical Center. "AT&T is an important partner in our work, and I applaud the company's participation in the federal CAF program and their continued commitment to providing broadband in remote areas."

About AT&T

AT&T Inc. (NYSE: T) helps millions around the globe connect with leading entertainment, mobile, high speed Internet and voice services. We're the world's largest provider of pay TV. We have TV customers in the U.S. and 11 Latin American countries. In the U.S., our wireless network offers the nation's strongest LTE signal and the most reliable 4G LTE network. We offer the best global wireless coverage. And we help businesses worldwide serve their customers better with our mobility and secure cloud solutions.

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Reliability and signal strength claims based on nationwide carriers' LTE. Signal strength claim based ONLY on avg. LTE signal strength. LTE not available everywhere.

Sept. 17, 2015 /PRNewswire/



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