University of Charleston

Online Access Information

 

We continue to be impressed with how well the entire UC community has transitioned to online learning.  Students, faculty and staff have reacted with speed, innovation, understanding and experience to make this transition as seamless as possible.

While there have understandably been a few issues, we continue to work through them to the best of our ability.

 

One of the vital components to learning and working offsite is the ability to connect online.  To help make sure that the UC community has and continues to have access to internet, we have put together a list of internet providers that have created programs for no cost or low cost in-home internet during the coronavirus outbreak. (You must quality for certain low-income internet programs or have (or be) a student living in the household.)

Here is a list of internet carriers and the programs they are offering:

AT&T

For the next 60 days, AT&T will not terminate service for any wireless, home phone, or broadband residential or small business customer due to inability to pay.

They will also do the following:

  • Waive late payment fees.
  • Keep their public Wi-Fi hotspots open for anyone who needs them.
  • The service will also be offering unlimited internet data and offer internet access for limited income households at $10 a month through the Access from AT&T program.

For more details, visit https://about.att.com/pages/COVID-19.html.

 

Comcast Xfinity

The company is opening their Xfinity WiFi network for free along with providing unlimited data. To help people stay connected with school and work, Comcast is opening up their Xfinity WiFi network for everyone, as well as:

  • Hotspots across the country will be available to anyone who needs them for free, including non-subscribers. You can find a map of hot spots at https://wifi.xfinity.com/. Just use “xfinitywifi” network name and launch a browser.
  • Data plans will be paused for 60 days, which will give all customers unlimited data for no additional charge.
  • No late disconnects or late fees for those who contact the company about not being able to pay their bill.
  • Internet Essentials, their broadband adoption program, is free to new customers.

For more information, visit https://corporate.comcast.com/covid-19.

 

Verizon Free WiFi

Verizon is offering these services:

  • The company will not terminate service to any residential or small business customers because of their inability to pay bills due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus.
  • Waiving late fees for those impacted by COVID-19
  • Tripling data allowance for Verizon Innovative Learning schools

For more information, visit https://www.verizon.com/about/news/update-verizon-serve-customers-covid-19.

 

Charter Spectrum Free WiFi

Charter is offering similar services during the coronavirus pandemic. The company will offer:

  • Free spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 or college students who don’t have a Spectrum broadband subscription. Call 1-844-488-8395 to enroll. Installation fees will be waived for new student households.
  • Open WiFi hotspots

For more information, visit https://corporate.charter.com/newsroom/charter-to-offer-free-access-to-spectrum-broadband-and-wifi-for-60-days-for-new-K12-and-college-student-households-and-more.

 

Sprint

Sprint is opening up their network to their customers and:

  • Won’t terminate service if customers are unable to pay due to coronavirus issues
  • Waive late fees caused by economic disturbances related to the coronavirus pandemic
  • Customers with international long-distance plans will get complimentary international calling rates from the U.S. to countries defined by the CDC as Level 3.
  • Customers with metered data plans will have unlimited data per month for 60 days at no extra cost
  • Customers will get an extra 20GB of mobile hotspot data per month for 60 days.
  • Coming soon: Customers with mobile hotspot-capable handsets without a hotspot will get 20GB per month for 60 days at no extra cost.

For more information, visit https://newsroom.sprint.com/covid-19-updates-sprint-responds.htm.

 

T-Mobile

The wireless provider already has a majority of customers with unlimited talk, text, and data, but they’re doubling down on their effort to keep their customers connected.

  • All current T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile customers who have data plans will have unlimited smartphone data, excluding roaming.
  • T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile customers will get an additional 20GB of mobile hotspots/tethering service for the next 60 days. The company says this feature will be coming soon.
  • Work with Lifeline partners to get customers extra free data up to 5GB per month over the next two months
  • Increase data allowance for free to schools and students for the next 60 days, which means at least 20GB of data per month for each participant

For more information, visit https://www.t-mobile.com/news/t-mobile-update-on-covid-19-response.

 

 

Keep Americans Covered Pledge

 

Every provider that has signed the Keep Americans Connected Pledge has opened up their Wi-Fi hotspots for free public use. For a list of those providers, visit: Keep Americans Connected – www.fcc.gov.

 

Keep in Mind

 

Your internet speed may be affected by everyone staying inside – more people than usual are working and learning from home, staying in for movie nights, video calling friends and family, and generally hanging out online.

All that traffic means that your ISP’s (internet service provider’s) network infrastructure and your home network could see some speed issues due to network congestion, which is basically an internet traffic jam.

If you are having issues, check how many devices are connected to your network. If you’re streaming Netflix on your smart TV, someone else in your house is streaming video gameplay on Twitch, and someone else is having a FaceTime conversation at the same time, you might have a problem. More connected devices doing high-bandwidth tasks typically means more congestion on your home network, and slower speeds.

 

If you are having other issues, please feel free to contact the UC IT department at help@ucwv.edu.