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Letter to the Editor: Springfield metro already high adopter of gigabit internet

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Dear editor,

I appreciated the essay written by the Springfield Area Chamber of Commerce senior vice president for economic development [Editor’s note: “Workforce struggles highlight quality of place value” by Ryan Mooney, published in the July 19 edition].

Mr. Mooney shared valuable insight about demographic trends and worker shortages. I applaud the chamber’s view that investments in “quality of place” are necessary to retain and recruit a high-quality workforce and fuel community growth.

Robust broadband service with gigabit speed is a key asset that gets attention when chamber leaders study peer cities and chart a course for Springfield’s success. Mediacom has offered gigabit-speed broadband for more than four years and consumer adoption is high.

I lead Mediacom operations in Springfield. I hosted city leaders from Springfield and surrounding communities when we became the first ISP in Missouri to light up a 100% gigabit-technology network in 2017.

Gigabit internet access is not a new amenity just now arriving in Springfield. In the four years since Mediacom deployed this transformational technology, the number of subscribers choosing gig-speed connections has consistently grown. Today, the gigabit adoption rate among Springfield residents is considerably higher than the national rate.

Among all U.S. broadband subscribers, 10% are provisioned for gigabit speeds (source: OpenVault Broadband Insights, March 31, 2021). By comparison, 18.5% of Mediacom broadband customers in Greene County connect to Xtream gig-speed internet.

One might assume this big differential is due to Greene County being a metro area. However, Mediacom also delivers gigabit-speed broadband to residents and businesses in smaller communities. When Greene County is removed from data for a 15-county area of southern Missouri, the gig-speed adoption rate among Mediacom subscribers rises to 19%.

This means that when Springfield employers allow employees to work from home, they can be assured that a robust gigabit internet connection is available to all addresses within reach of Mediacom’s network in Springfield and in many other communities, too.

—Steve Bennett, senior director for area operations, Mediacom Communications

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