FAQs for DREMC Members

DREMC and United are very excited to collaborate to expand broadband access to underserved areas across Middle Tennessee. DREMC reinforces its commitment to their members by advancing high-speed internet connectivity with a partner that is local, reliable and customer friendly. To see the official Press Release and watch the Video Livestream Replay, visit NEWS.

Answers to Your Questions

1. What is the nature of the DREMC and United Communications agreement?

DREMC and United have agreed to collaborate for expansion of broadband access to underserved areas within the DREMC’s membership. This agreement offers access to various DREMC assets like the fiber ring, poles, etc. Having access to these assets and permits will expedite the build-out of high-speed internet and offer greater efficiency.

2. What counties will be served by this new broadband partnership?

The agreement will focus on serving DREMC members while United continues expansion projects in MTE’s service area as well. DREMC currently serves areas of 16 counties and there are numerous factors that influence and determine the targeted areas such as cost to build, support funding, distance from current fiber access, etc.; these factors are evaluated to determine build feasibility. But our goal is to connect unserved communities as well as give served communities a better choice for internet.

3. Why has DREMC partnered with United?

United is a leading, local provider for broadband for both residential and business customers, offering both fiber and fixed wireless products. United delivers industry-leading customer satisfaction, maintains a 4.5 Star Google rating and has one of the most reliable networks in the industry. United is also recognized by BroadbandNow for delivering one of the fastest speeds in the nation.

In addition, United is committed to their Project UNITE initiative to CONNECT unserved communities with fast, reliable internet, PARTNER with local stakeholders, companies and local governments to seek state and federal funding for their communities, and SERVE our customers with friendly, responsive service. United was recently nationally awarded the Cornerstone Award for their work in connecting rural communities.

By working together, United and DREMC can deliver the best experience with the most reliable service at affordable rates and being financially responsible.

4. When will broadband be available at my home or business?

United is already serving areas of Bedford, Franklin, Marshall and Maury counties so you may be serviceable already, check https://fiber.united.net/. If service is not yet available in your area, you may register to express interest in broadband and request updates on future expansion plans. New broadband expansion areas will be prioritized based on community input, site registrations and other engineering factors.

5. How can I request broadband service for my home or business?

You can check your address and register at https://fiber.united.net/. Your registration allows us to track interest in your area and build out new broadband services based on demand. If you can’t find your address, please submit a request to have your address reviewed by our team at united@united.net.

6. What is broadband and why is it important?

Broadband is, quite simply, high-speed internet access. Broadband can be delivered over multiple technologies, including fiber, cable and fixed wireless. The official Federal Communications Commission (FCC) definition of broadband is a minimum of 25 Mbps (megabits per second) download and 3 Mbps upload. High-speed internet has revolutionized how we use technology in our homes and businesses, from being able to work from home, learn remotely or utilize telehealth. Faster speeds mean more possibilities for our residents, local businesses and communities.

7. Why Is Fiber Better Than Cable Or Satellite

Fiber internet is considered future-proof; it is the easiest to improve capacity, primarily a matter of changing electronics rather than rebuilding new connections; is more scalable in bandwidth – this is the advantage of fiber over cable or satellite services. Fiber is better for delivering the fastest speeds especially for upload bandwidth, and is less prone to high-traffic slowdowns as compared to cable.

Upload speed is used for video calls, photo sharing, uploading large files when working from home, and is critical for gaming. The average home has 10+ connected devices and some estimates are triple that in five years; average household consumption is projected at 600 – 650 Gigabytes and growing – fiber can meet this demand and more.

8. What Internet speeds will United offer?

United currently offers internet speeds to residential customers up to 1 Gbps (1 Gig) and we’re very competitively priced. Check https://united.net/services/internet/ for more information.

9. Will United offer Business Internet services?

Yes. United offers customized business Internet solutions to fit the needs of any size business with speeds of up to 10 Gbps. For information on our business offerings, please visit https://united.net/business/.

10. What can I expect to pay for broadband? Will I be charged for data usage?

United has internet plans starting at $65/month and all United Internet plans include unlimited usage. Stream all you want, with no unexpected overages each month. In addition, United does not require a contract for residential customers – we’re that sure of your satisfaction.

11. Will broadband services be deployed to all DREMC members?

We are working diligently to identify service areas where new infrastructure can be deployed within the next couple of years, however, the full project scope and implementation will be a multi-year process.

12. Can DRMEC deliver broadband over its existing power lines?

No. Broadband will require new infrastructure such as fiber optic and fixed wireless technologies. However the effort to build out the Middle Tennessee network is greatly enhanced by DREMC’s foresight to establish a fiber ring throughout their service area. United’s expertise in fiber and fixed wireless, combined with DREMC’s assets and permits, provides an effective and efficient way to deliver broadband and a world-class smart grid.

13. Will the cost of this new service affect DREMC members’ electricity rates?

No. This partnership will not affect a member’s electricity rates. The rates members pay for service are kept as low as possible and bringing high-speed internet via this agreement will have no impact on rates.

14. If I am a current United customer, will this partnership affect when I will have fiber/broadband?

United will continue to expand and upgrade high-speed Internet services to existing customers. This partnership will allow United to accelerate fiber and fixed wireless expansion.

15. How can local governments help?

We can do more with government engagement and support – we don’t want our local communities to get left-behind. We are at the beginning of a massive infrastructure investment in broadband – but this network is not going to build itself and there is no guarantee our region will benefit from this funding, so our region needs to take a leadership position and have plans in place to bring this funding to Middle TN.

Here’s how: With local government support, there is higher potential for federal or state funding; support United and DREMC in order to identify and target the state and federal funds that should be allocated to your communities; help evaluate areas of need with city and county data; encourage businesses and community leaders to show interest in determining where to build; it takes a unified effort to be successful in grant rewards so join in our submissions – work with us to acquire the grant money your communities deserve.

16. Where can I learn more about Project UNITE?

Project UNITE was launched with the goal of providing high-speed internet to every unserved home or business in Middle Tennessee. Learn more at https://united.net/project-unite/.

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