On Saturday March 14th, several of the larger Internet Service Providers announced that they would be offering free data, with some offering free service, speed upgrades, and hotspot access for the next 60 days across the United States. This is a relief for thousands of people who suddenly find themselves working and attending virtual classes from home due to the coronavirus outbreak.
Comcast has said that it will make its Xfinity internet service free for everyone for the next 60 days. In addition to offering free services to homes in their territories, Comcast Xfinity Wi-Fi hot spots across the country are free for anyone who needs them, including those who aren't current Xfinity customers. Comcast also announced it plans to pause all data caps for 60 days, giving all subscribers unlimited data at no additional charge. The company also said it would not be disconnecting a customer’s Internet service or assess late fees if the customer contacts Comcast to let them know that they can’t pay for their service during this period.
Charter Communications, one of the largest cable internet service providers in the US has also said they would offer free broadband in the home and public Wi-Fi access for 60 days to students impacted by the COVID-19 shutdown. Charter’s Spectrum service is available in 44 states, with the largest coverage areas in New York, California, and Texas.
AT&T has lifted data caps and is offering free public Wi-Fi for 60 days. Cox Communications said it will boost speeds on all low-cost broadband plans, and Verizon announced it would temporarily hold off on any late fees and disconnections, while Sprint and T-Mobile said all current subscribers would have unlimited data.