Pai Praises Cox Connect2Compete

Cox is expanding its Connect2Compete program, which has already connected over 400,000 low-income Americans to the internet.

Cox has been a major force in Connect2Compete, the industry program providing discount broadband to families of kids eligible for school lunch programs.

FCC chair Ajit Pai praised the program, and expansion, at a National Press Club event in Washington Monday (Oct. 1).

 Cox President Pat Esser says the company will invest $20 million annually to help close the digital divide.

"With convenient, reliable internet access at home, students can readily focus on their school work, explore their passions and ultimately reach their full potential in life," said Esser. "We will continue devoting important resources – including discounted internet service – to bolster their success and close the digital divide."

"Almost three years ago, I was in Baton Rouge, Louisiana when Cox announced it was doubling the speed of the service it was offering through Connect2Compete," Pai said. "Today, Cox is announcing that the number of people taking advantage of this program has since more than doubled. That’s a lot more people taking charge of their future."

Cox participation in Connect2Compete has been on an upward trajectory. Two years ago, Cox began offering free in-home WiFi for Connect2Compete participants, and last year it teamed with the American Library Association to increase access to digital literacy training for students and families at libraries and online.

"Bridging the digital divide should be a national mission," said Pai. "Too many millions of Americans are still missing out on the benefits of the Internet age. Connect2Compete and the FCC can help change that. If we keep working together, America’s digital future will be even brighter than it already is—even on Monday mornings."

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.