As part of its continued push to keep people connected during the pandemic, Comcast is making its public WiFi hotspots free to anyone for the remainder of 2020. In March, Comcast made its 1.5 million public hotspots free to all (even non-Xfinity Internet subscribers). The offer was set to expire after 60 days, but now the hotspots will remain free for another six months.
“We saw a huge jump in usage after we opened up our public hotspots, and we’re excited to keep them open through the end of the year as the nation begins taking steps to reopen,” Dana Strong, president of Xfinity Consumer Services, said in a statement.
According to Comcast, hundreds of thousands of non-Xfinity customers have taken advantage of the free hotspots. Last month, Senators Cory Booker, Kamala Harris and Ron Wyden urged Comcast to make all of its WiFi hotspots (including Xfinity customers’ routers) open to students who don’t have internet access at home. In response to Engadget’s inquiry at that time, Comcast pointed to its other programs meant to keep people connected.
Comcast’s offer to make its Internet Essentials program free to new users for 60 days was also set to expire. Yesterday, the company shared that it will continue to provide 60 days of free service to new Internet Essentials customers through the end of the year.
“Now more than ever, connectivity has become a vital tool for families to access educational resources for students, important news and information about their community and the world, telehealth applications, or to stay in touch with family and friends,” Strong said.