EPB Chattanooga launched symmetrical 25 Gig service to all residential and commercial customers Wednesday. The Chattanooga-Hamilton County Convention Center is the provider’s first 25 Gig customer with Hamilton County and the City of Chattanooga donating $151,000 to cover the cost of networking equipment, WiFi access point and a significant portion of the cost of multi-gig connectivity for the next five years.
“This is just a natural evolution. We are constantly reinvesting in our network to future-proof Chattanooga,” EPB VP, New Products Katie Espeseth told CFX. “Whether you are working here in a company or you’re living in Chattanooga and working remotely, we feel like this infrastructure is critical for our residents to be successful, but more importantly our community.”
The enhanced speeds will come at a cost. EPB is offering 25 Gig symmetrical service to residential customers at $1,500/month and to businesses at a starting rate of $12,500/month. There are additional discounts that could be available to those business customers based on volume and other factors.
Anyone that lives within EPB’s footprint can access the 25 Gig service plan, and while there may be more residential uses for this in the future, obvious first clients would be universities and large companies that have multiple users engaging in file sharing and collaborative work. Current residential- and commercial-grade routers are not set up for 25 Gig service today, so EPB is encouraging customers to call if they’re interested in service.
“We have technical resources within EPB who can certainly talk to our residential customers as well as our commercial customers about what we have found will work and some recommendations or thoughts about what they would want to use really in their own businesses to get the most out of that 25 Gig service,” Espeseth said. She hopes that other municipal providers will also push their networks into the future as an investment in their communities and to set themselves up for long-term technological success.
“There will be things developed in the future that we’re trying to keep up with and I would advise any community to try to keep your eye on the future and build toward it, and not think about what people are doing today,” she said. “I don’t think we have scratched the surface of what people can do or what they’re going to be doing.”
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