2012-04-27 / Business

Connect South Carolina leads effort to increase high speed internet access

Contributed by Connect South Carolina

Connect South Carolina unveiled an innovative new broadband mapping tool offering unmatched views of South Carolina’s technology landscape that will guide expansion efforts.

The mapping tool, called My ConnectView™, is a valuable tool for consumers, policy makers, Internet providers, and planning teams working to increase broadband access, adoption, and use in communities across the state and nation.

“South Carolina’s dynamic new maps and data layers put all the information right at your fingertips,” said Connect South Carolina Stakeholder Relations Manager Corey Johns. “My ConnectView is a userfriendly, multi-functional way for local leaders, policymakers, consumers, and technology providers to develop plans for the expansion and increased adoption of broadband.”

My ConnectView, developed by Connected Nation, Connect South Carolina’s parent organization, replaces the previous mapping tool and is faster and easier to use; features more interactive layers and additional tools to explore data; and allows users to e-mail, print, and send feedback on custom maps.

By offering unprecedented views of unserved and underserved areas of South Carolina, My ConnectView will help drive economic development planning centered around broadband technology expansion efforts in the state.

Ensuring the accuracy of the data behind the maps is important to the people of South Carolina. This year, the FCC will begin reforming its universal service system in a way that will shift those subsidies to areas that do not currently have access to broadband at targeted speed tiers. As it implements the Connect America Fund, the FCC will rely upon the broadband inventory data in the broadband maps.

Connect South Carolina is calling on South Carolina communities and leaders to assist with refining the most accurate picture of broadband availability in South Carolina, and to provide feedback on the maps, especially if a discrepancy in broadband coverage is noticed. The input from consumers will help inform increased private investment into unserved and underserved areas by broadband providers. So how can South Carolinians participate? Citizens are asked to go to http://www.connectsc.org/ mapping/_ interactive_ map_ interface/?q=map and enter their address in the locate field. A list of broadband providers will be shown. If the resident believes the list is incorrect or service is being reported in an area where none exists, they can share the results using Connect South Carolina’s online form via the Feedback button at the top of the map or www.connectsc.org/broadband inquiry.

Connect South Carolina just completed its 5th round of broadband data updates to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. The data, gathered as part of the State Broadband Initiative program, is used to populate the National Broadband Map. New interactive and PDF maps are online and can be accessed under the learn tab www.connectsc.org/interactive-map> on the Connect South Carolina website.

Providers are urged to use the tool to help verify the information presented and to contact them if they can't get access to broadband. Connect South Carolina uses such feedback to verify the accuracy of the maps to engage providers and community leaders to promote broadband expansion into unserved and underserved areas of South Carolina.

About Connect South Carolina

As South Carolina’s State Broadband Initiative, Connect South Carolina is leading the effort to increase high-speed Internet access, adoption and usage to ensure the Palmetto State’s competitiveness in the connected global economy of the 21st Century. Connect South Carolina, an independent non-profit organization, was designated by the state to work with all broadband providers to create South Carolina’s first interactive map of broadband coverage. This work serves as a foundation for addressing remaining service gaps while also engaging state, regional, and local leaders in workforce development efforts designed to bridge South Carolina’s digital divide. For information visit: www.ConnectSC.org.

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