Meridian Star

Business

December 15, 2013

C Spire launches preregistration phase

MERIDIAN —     C Spire’s initiative to bring ultra-fast 1 Gbps fiber to the home Internet service to Quitman and eight other Mississippi cities has shifted into high gear with the launch of customized web pages that allow thousands of residents in the finalist cities to pre-register for the service.

    The company launched the preregistration phase on Dec. 4 for the nation’s first and only statewide roll out of the 1 Gig service, which promises Internet access up to 100 times faster than national average broadband speeds for residents in each of the nine Mississippi cities in the initial phase, according to a company press release.  

    These cities and towns were among 33 municipalities that submitted formal applications in late October to be the first to bring the technology to their communities.

    Residents in Quitman, Batesville, Clinton, Corinth, Hattiesburg, Horn Lake, McComb, Ridgeland and Starkville can now preregister for the ultra-fast Internet, as well as related digital television and home phone services.  All nine cities approved franchise agreements with C Spire to pave the way for the start of the pre-registration phase.

    Individuals will need to make a $10 refundable deposit and provide credit card information when they pre-register on their respective site. The web page for each city also features detailed, interactive maps of fiber hoods showing what percentage of residents need to pre-register to turn the area “green” and qualify for build out of the service.  

    There are also progress bars for each fiber hood that will be updated daily to help residents get a “real time” snapshot of their success in getting neighbors, friends and others who live nearby to pre-register for the service. The registration percentage goal for Quitman’s single mega fiber hood is 45 percent.

    “As soon as a critical number of neighborhoods have reached their percentage goals in a fiber hood, C Spire plans to begin construction – so there is a possibility that work could commence in more than one community at the same time,” said Gregg Logan, senior vice president of C Spire Fiber.

    The 1 Gbps Internet access will be available for $80 a month, $100 a month for combined Internet and home phone, $140 a month for Internet and digital TV and $160 a month for the entire package of all three services. C Spire Wireless customers will receive an additional $10 monthly discount on all packages.

    Quitman Mayor Eddie Fulton said the technology will boost the city’s prospects now and in the future, according to the press release.

    “Internet is the critical element as it represents the future for television, business communications, and is critical for the medical field,” Fulton states in the press release. “We have become a digital world and all information is transmitted digitally. Current high definition television has to compress its digital file in order to transmit a signal.  

    "Without fiber optic to your home, future transmissions of ultra-high definition or 3-D would not be available. Medical consults will be available from remote locations with fiber optic accessibility, which translates into life-saving technology.  It will greatly improve the opportunities for students in the Quitman School District.”

    C Spire officials said the finalist cities are entering a critical stage of the initiative where local residents and homeowners will determine where the services go first.  

    “There’s a tremendous amount of excitement in each of these communities and a strong desire to be among the first to receive the 1 Gig Internet service to the home,” said Hu Meena, president and CEO of C Spire. “We’re looking forward to bringing tomorrow’s technology to Quitman and these other Mississippi communities today because we know that this service has the power to transform communities into hubs for technology investment and economic growth.”  

    To pre-register for 1 Gig service in Quitman, go to www.cspire.com/quitman.  To learn more about C Spire’s Fiber to the Home initiative, visit www.cspire.com/fiberhome.  

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