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Connected Nation Ohio Releases Updated Broadband Availability Maps, Asks for Consumer Input

Columbus, OH, Dec. 19, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Connected Nation Ohio (CN Ohio) today published updated broadband (high-speed internet) coverage maps and preliminary availability statistics for the Buckeye State. You can see and review these updated maps by heading to www.connectednation.org/ohio/mapping-analysis/.

“Having accurate broadband coverage maps is critically important as Ohio’s leaders implement a statewide broadband strategy through InnovateOhio. They need better data to make smart investments and informed decisions for infrastructure buildouts,” said Tom Ferree, Chairman & CEO, Connected Nation. “We applaud Governor Mike DeWine and Lieutenant Governor Jon Husted for prioritizing this work to expand access to more Ohioans. It’s clear they understand that broadband impacts everything from the economy to education and that it provides opportunities and vital resources to Ohio families, businesses, farmers, and communities.”

InnovateOhio released the Ohio Broadband Strategy today in conjunction with the updated maps. The new broadband maps were developed from a combination of direct provider outreach and data collection, federal data filings, and independent research conducted by CN Ohio; the maps represent fixed broadband services (i.e., cable, DSL, fiber, and fixed wireless technologies) from 119 providers.

Preliminary availability statistics are also available here. These statistics estimate the number of households served by various speed combinations and by individual technologies. The estimates are preliminary, with data refinements and corrections being planned for March 2020 based on public feedback, field validation activities, and additional provider outreach.                                                                                                                       
“We wish to thank those broadband providers that helped make this initial version of the broadband map possible,” said Chip Spann, Director of Engineering and Technical Services. “We continue to receive initial and updated datasets from providers which will result in several refinements to the March update of the maps.”

One study found that reaching full broadband coverage in Ohio would generate an estimated $1 billion to $2 billion, conservatively, and up to $6.6 billion in economic benefits over the next 15 years. In addition, the telehealth cost savings annually per healthcare facility are $27,209. 

“We have long known that expanding broadband access can lead to great things for the state, but now we have better data to make that possible,” said Tina Lyden, the recently named State Program Director, CN Ohio. “Ohio has not released maps that identify broadband availability and speeds since 2017. That’s a huge gap in research that’s needed to help more families and communities, especially when you consider new technology is being developed and put in place across the country at a rapidly increasing pace. These maps can arm state leaders with more-complete data about where broadband is and is not and can help them better identify ways to improve access for all Ohioans.”

Since 2008, CN Ohio, a local subsidiary of Connected Nation, has worked to raise awareness and identify ways to expand access to broadband. These updated broadband maps are part of the nonprofit’s new phase in its mapping, technical assistance, and analysis for the state—but it’s not done yet.

Recognizing that these initial maps need adjustments and additional data incorporated, CN Ohio is inviting residents and businesses to provide additional feedback about access in their area and the accuracy of the maps through February 2020 at https://connectednation.org/ohio/feedback.

“We are laser-focused on closing the Digital Divide in Ohio. Part of that means we must identify where families, businesses, agricultural sectors, and whole communities are being left unserved or underserved,” said Dan Manning, Community Technology Advisor, CN Ohio. “We kicked this work off by hosting nearly a dozen Ohio Regional Broadband Forums in July to gather information from local leaders and key stakeholders. We will soon announce another round of these forums to go over this new data and take in additional feedback and comments from community leaders in every region of the state.”

To learn more about CN Ohio, head to the website at www.connectednation.org/ohio

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About Connected Nation Ohio (CN Ohio) is the local subsidiary of the national nonprofit Connected Nation. Our mission is to improve lives by providing innovation solutions that expand access, adoption, and use of high-speed internet and its related technology to all people. Everyone belongs in a Connected Nation.

Connected Nation works with consumers, local community leaders, states, technology providers, and foundations to develop and implement technology expansion programs with core competencies centered on a mission to improve digital inclusion for people and places previously underserved or overlooked. For more information, please visit: connectednation.org and follow Connected Nation on Facebook and Twitter.

 

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Jessica Denson, Communications Director
Connected Nation
502-341-2024
jdenson@connectednation.org