Windstream Focuses on Gigabit Infrastructure for Future Broadband Challenges

Company head says scalable, gigabit future is a priority now to deal with future broadband challenges.

Windstream Focuses on Gigabit Infrastructure for Future Broadband Challenges
Photo of Tony Thomas from his address during Fiber Connect 2021.

NASHVILLE, July 28, 2021—Windstream’s broadband arm Kinetic will be focused on delivering scalable, future-proof, gigabit capable infrastructure to rural communities, as he urged the industry to view the current moment for broadband as a “generational” opportunity.

The president and CEO of the software and broadband service provider, Tony Thomas said during his keynote at the Fiber Connect 2021 conference Tuesday the industry is on the cusp of one of the most significant periods of growth in its history.

He said, as others have remarked, that the effort to bridge the digital divide has become even more pronounced as the pandemic has dragged on and that his company’s focus is on ensuring that the technologies not just now, but in the future, are ready to scale-up in speed to take on the pandemic-like challenges that the world has experienced in the past 18 months.

Thomas said Windstream is committed to building networks with at least 100 Mbps symmetrical service and stressed that fiber was the technology to accomplish this. He commended the capabilities of fiber networks, stating, “it’s not personal, it’s just math.”

He also pointed to the approximately 170,000 miles of fiber Windstream has laid and delivered to homes in over 200,000 localities across 18 states. He highlighted the fact that Windstream completed its obligations for its Connect America II awards by their deadline in December of 2020, and that Windstream had been the recipient of $523 million in Rural Digital Opportunity Fund money.

Thomas also drew attention to Windstream’s successful partnerships with Colquitt EMC in Georgia, the Arkansas Rural Connect program, the Pennsylvania Green Country program, and the Nebraska Cares Act.

Thomas noted that in the U.S., some of the regions most impacted by the digital divide were made up of black and brown communities, and again committed Windstream to helping lift these communities up.

“If you are not connected to the internet at the rights speeds, you are left behind.”

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