The Emergency Broadband Benefit is an FCC program specifically made for families who can’t afford internet service during the COVID-19 pandemic. Many carriers and internet providers in the US adhered to the program and offer their customers discounts for various services.
Boost Mobile announced today that it has launched its own Emergency Broadband Benefit program. The plan is to provide qualifying customers access to free high-speed mobile internet via two connectivity options.
The first option is the mobile phone, as Boost Mobile customers can take advantage of 35GB/month free data and unlimited talk and text on a smartphone. Qualifying customers can either bring their own device or purchase one from the Boost Mobile website or their local retail location.
The alternative would be Boost’s mobile hotspot option. Customers can purchase a mobile hotspot for a one-time cost of $25 and receive 35GB/month of high-speed broadband. Boost Mobile states that the hotspot allows for up to 8 devices to be connected simultaneously and is more appropriate for home use or families in which multiple members need internet access.
A household is eligible if a member of the household meets one of the criteria below:
- Has an income that is at or below 135% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or participates in certain assistance programs, such as SNAP, Medicaid, or Lifeline;
- Approved to receive benefits under the free and reduced-price school lunch program or the school breakfast program, including through the USDA Community Eligibility Provision in the 2019-2020 or 2020-2021 school year;
- Received a Federal Pell Grant during the current award year;
- Experienced a substantial loss of income due to job loss or furlough since February 29, 2020, and the household had a total income in 2020 at or below $99,000 for single filers and $198,000 for joint filers; or
- Meets the eligibility criteria for a participating provider’s existing low-income or COVID-19 program.
Those who believe they’re eligible for the Emergency Broadband Benefit program can visit the Boost Mobile website or their local Boost retail location to apply for the program and start using the plan.