AT&T unveiled a new super-fast internet service in Fresno, Clovis and Visalia on Tuesday that the company says will eliminate frustrating midvideo buffering pauses and speed up business transactions.
The tech company went live with GigaPower, which will allow business and residents on its fiber network to upgrade their internet speed to 1 gigabit per second – fast enough to allow users to download 8,000 word-processing documents or 25 songs in one second, a TV show in three seconds and a full high-definition film in about half a minute.
Community leaders expect the benefits to be plentiful for businesses, families and schools, especially in the tech industry.
“I’m not sure what the next big app or service is, but I want it to happen in Fresno, and we think GigaPower will certainly help make that a reality,” said Nathan Ahle, CEO of the Fresno Chamber of Commerce.
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Ahle and Clovis Mayor Nathan Magsig described the improvements as a step in helping the area’s small businesses to succeed. The faster connections will allow people to communicate and function more efficiently, especially when many people in one house or business are relying on working internet, Magsig said.
8,000 per second Speed of downloading word-processing documents using GigaPower
Marcos Vargas, a manager at a Fresno AT&T retail store, said he expects many people to want the fastest possible internet.
“A lot of people want to stream online and game online,” Vargas said. “Now, everything can be instant. When people use apps like FaceTime to talk, they won’t have the pauses or breaking up because the streaming will be instant.”
The company also has partnered with Fresno State for this launch, bringing high-speed internet to campus and applauding the school for its values.
“We are expanding our technology across campus, even in the outdoor learning environments,” Provost Lynnette Zelezny said.
The better connections are expected to make it easier for students, teachers and researchers on campus. AT&T also announced it is giving the university a $25,000 grant. The Aspire Grant will go toward the peer mentorship and student success programs, which have an emphasis on helping all students, including those with learning disabilities, to learn successfully.
With more than 70 percent of Fresno State’s students being first-generation college students, and hundreds of Dream Act students in attendance, the grant will go toward programs to keep students in school, Zelezny said.
AT&T offers GigaPower in 25 areas so far, including San Francisco, San Diego, San Jose and Los Angeles. The service costs $139 a month, plus a $7 monthly modem fee.