Point Broadband will soon expand its service area to include parts of Auburn and other parts of Lee County. The City of Opelika sold the original fiber network in November 2018.
“At this time, we’re still evaluating what areas [to cover],” said Taylor Nipper, vice president of marketing and sales for Point Broadband. “A lot of it’s going to depend on where our existing network is in Opelika, where it borders Auburn’s city limits, also where we’ve been seeing demand.”
Point Broadband’s main product is their fiber internet, offering speeds of up to one gigabyte per second, which is faster than what traditional cable companies can offer, Nipper said.
The original system was limited to the Opelika city limits since it was owned by the City, so their company will take advantage of their ability to expand, Nipper said.
The Council approved an eight-year franchise agreement between the City and Point Broadband last year.
“Our goal is to reach areas that are underserved today,” Nipper said. “It’s safe to say that if there are parts of Auburn that are underserved currently, those will be the places we’re going to first.”
Auburn Ward 2 Council member Kelley Griswold said his Ward has a lack of competition in the internet market, with some areas having a lack of coverage altogether. Some constituents in his Ward therefore rely on satellite internet.
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Auburn Ward 3 Council member Beth Witten said that her Ward lacks coverage in its northern regions, specifically north of Highway 280 and along Highway 147.
“Our fiber network will be the technology we use to expand into the most dense areas,” Nipper said. “We currently serve customers in Lee County, the Beauregard area and Gold Hill with our fiber wireless technology. We envision expanding both of those services.”
Point Broadband currently serves multiple medical offices and plans to use this expansion to cover their counterparts in Auburn, Nipper said.
Nipper recommends the prospective customers visit their website and fill out their information under the “check availability” section. The more people who go to the website and fill out the form, the more likely it is that those respondents’ areas get coverage.
“We are already underway with the evaluation and engineering studies,” Nipper said. “It will help drive where we go based on customer demands.”
Nipper said Point Broadband is planning to announce the first areas to be covered in Auburn in the first quarter of 2020. Pricing and product information will follow what is available for Opelika.
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