As school is starting again all over America, one issue is on the minds of many US citizens and politicians – closing the “homework gap.” This is a newly coined term, which stems from the recent pandemic, and it’s catching on across America and worldwide.
The “homework gap” is the chasm between families with home broadband connectivity and those without it. Today, it is estimated that approximately 27 million families in the US alone do not have broadband access either due to no connectivity or the ability to afford it.
Over the past few years, it has become evident how vital broadband connectivity has become. It’s not just for big businesses anymore, but it’s also for mom-and-pop shops, local governments, schools, and households. Also, it’s not just essential for urban and suburban areas, since it’s also becoming increasingly vital in rural and remote regions. In rural areas, during the pandemic, it was not uncommon to see large numbers of cars parked outside of a McDonald’s or a Starbucks trying to connect with their broadband networks. There were entire families inside their vehicles, using multiple devices, trying to do the necessary day-to-day activities that now require broadband connectivity. One of the most heart-breaking things to witness was all the children of all ages struggling to maintain a connection, so that they could complete their daily homework.
Luckily, there is plenty of good news on the horizon.
Not too long ago, it was thought that the only way to get broadband to rural areas was via satellite, which is not a cost-effective solution, since most towns cannot afford it, let alone individual families. Today, many telecom companies, cable companies, and other traditional internet service providers are beginning to spread their networks to remote rural areas, bringing more wireless broadband options to these “digital deserts”.
However, the question becomes, how do you cover the “last mile”? It’s the term to describe the distance from the regional broadband termination point to all the individual homes and businesses throughout the town. But, since it’s often cost-prohibitive for telecom, cable, and internet service companies to address the “last mile” issue, many local governments and system integrators are turning to Rajant’s solutions to extend broadband service to cover the “last mile” wirelessly.
Rajant has designed a system to operate in extreme environments, so it is uniquely capable of overcoming the challenges related to rural deployments. The system consists of multi-frequency BreadCrumbs® that provide a resilient and reliable wireless network, and the technology can hold and maintain multiple connections simultaneously. Hence, it has an array of radio options allowing for real-time data routing. In turn, the network delivers fully mobile, rapidly scalable, high-capacity connectivity, which is precisely the type of broadband network that rural towns require.
This innovative breakthrough in rural broadband technology offers a solution that is not only more cost-effective but also faster and easier to deploy, offers lower complexity, has higher reliability, and provides better flexibility and scalability. The Rajant broadband solution for rural areas has already been deployed in several remote areas in the US. So, this model can be replicated by rural communities across America – and around the world – in an effort to reach the “digital deserts,” deliver broadband to the “last mile,” and close the “homework gap.”
For more information about Rajant’s rural broadband solutions, click here.