Arkansas Utility to Offer 1-Gig Broadband

Tiny public utility Conway Corp., is the latest company to enter the ultra high-speed Internet arena, with plans to unveil a 1-Gigabit per second broadband service in Conway, Ark., in December.

Conway Corp. started operating the city-owned utility system 85 years ago. The company provides electric, water, wastewater, cable, Internet, telephone and security services within the Conway city limits.      

Conway Corp. plans to price the service at $94.95 per month.

“Internet usage has grown and will continue to as cloud-based products and services become more prevalent,” said Conway Corp. CEO Richard Arnold in a statement. “Gigabit download speeds seem a luxury today, but may be tomorrow’s necessity.”

Conway Corp. began offering broadband in 1997, after it completed construction on a city-wide fiber-coax network, a two-year project that cost $5.6 million. When the network went live, Conway Corp. said, it became the third company in the country and fifth in the world to offer high-speed, broadband cable Internet service.

“For several years, we have been on a strategic path toward gigabit service,” said chief technology officer Jason Hansen in a statement. “With this initiative, Conway Corp is embracing its position as an Internet technology leader.”

Conway, located about 30 miles northwest of capital city Little Rock, is home to a large student population with the University of Central Arkansas as well as two four-year liberal arts colleges. Major businesses in the area (popuation 63,816) include a Kimberly-Clark plant and an HP facility.