Prince William, VA, September 11, 2006 --(PR.com
)-- Prince William County Virginia is home to an estimated 350,000 residents. In an affluent community just outside Washington DC, the average price of a home in 2006 sold for $487,000. Yet connecting to the Internet via a broadband connection is not always an option.
Bryanna Altman, CEO of The Computer Doctor and Chairman of the Technology Business Council for the Prince William Regional Chamber of Commerce, recognized that it was not only her customers desiring more choices for Internet service. The community infrastructure simply wasn’t keeping up with the growing need for static IP addresses, better performance, higher quality of service standards, the ability to place a phone call over the Internet (Voice over the Internet- VoIP), and more competitive pricing.
In an area of the country where broadband Internet access is a way of life, some residents and business are still forced to rely on dial up or satellite to connect to the Internet. Verizon has been turning away customer requests for DSL because networks are maxed out. Comcast High Speed Internet is available but has limited service availability in upscale and rural areas of western Prince William such as Haymarket, Bristow, Catharpin and Bull Run. Said Altman, “Imagine building your million dollar dream home only to move in and realize that you are limited to a 56k dial up connection, or perhaps a satellite dish as a method of accessing the Internet! We also had a customer who purchased a new office condo on the eastern end of the county. His eight employees had been logging on to the Internet daily using a program that is hosted by his software manufacturer. At the new office, Verizon was unable to support any new customers and Comcast wasn’t available yet.”
Steven Day, the Prince William County Telecommunications Coordinator, was hired three years ago to serve as an Ombudsman to help with broadband problems or opportunities. Day has teamed up with Bryanna Altman to address community concerns and seek solutions.
Altman learned that hundreds of other cities across the Nation and even throughout the world were solving broadband access problems by welcoming wireless services to their communities. The difference is that these cities are municipalities and can offer Franchise Agreements to vendors or simply deploy it themselves; offering anytime, anywhere, anyplace wireless broadband connectivity.
Altman worked hard to educate her customers, the Regional Chamber of Commerce, Board of County Supervisors, speaking at Town Hall meetings and Consortiums while closely following the rapid deployment of wireless across the country.
Chairman-at-Large Sean Connaughton agreed that there was a need for Wireless Broadband in the community. Working together, they prepared a Resolution endorsing the need countywide wireless broadband and creating a Task Force to champion the effort. The Resolution passed unanimously. Attracting vendors is the hard part, it is important for them to know they’re welcome.
Said Altman, “Building the Untethered Nation in America is long overdue. Our broadband penetration rates in this country have fallen behind the average global standard. Wireless broadband Internet access can hugely affect our quality of life. Employers can encourage teleworkers in an effort to reduce traffic congestion, gasoline consumption, and give us back time that is currently being wasted in daily commuter traffic”.
“Some day we will view broadband Internet access as a utility or maybe it will be free like FM radio and paid for by advertisers. Large Internet Service Providers are in business to make money, which they do best by deploying services mostly in densely populated areas, leaving behind suburban and rural communities”.