Smartphones, tablets, and laptops are no longer fancy devices but basic tools to help you live a comfortable life and complete day-to-day tasks. The government recognized the importance of an internet-enabled gadget in every home during the Covid 19 pandemic and offered Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) to help keep families connected. The EBB program offered discounts on internet-enabled devices such as tablets, smartphones, and laptops, and monthly internet services to needy households. At the end of 2021, the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) replaced the EBB program as the government assistance program that offers free internet plans and free government tablets to eligible households.
The government through the ACP program partners with major carriers like Access Wireless to offer free monthly internet plans and a free android tablet to low-income households. You will need to qualify for the ACP program for you to apply for the Access Wireless free tablets. In this article, we look at how you can qualify for the Access Wireless free tablets and the best alternative companies and charities that offer a free tablet.
- How to Qualify for Access Wireless Free Tablets
- How to Qualify Based on Your Household Income
- How to Qualify Based on Participating in a Government Assistance Program
- Documents to Help You Show Proof of Eligibility for Access Wireless Free Tablets
- Proof of Income Documents
- Proof of Participating in a Federal Government Program Documents
- Other Necessary Documents
How to Qualify for Access Wireless Free Tablets
The ACP program is a federal assistance program that helps low-income households to get affordable internet service and a connected device such as a tablet or a laptop. The eligible household should have an income that is 200% below the Federal Poverty Line. A household is also eligible if a member is currently receiving any lifeline benefit such as Medicaid, SNAP, or Pell Grant.
An ACP-eligible household will get up to a $30 per month discount on an internet plan upon approval. Families in the Tribal Lands get up to a $75 per month discount on their internet plan. The eligible household also qualifies for a one-time gadget discount of up to $100 for a tablet, desktop computer, smartphone, or laptop. However, you will have to make a co-payment of between $10 and $50 to get the discounted government internet-enabled device. The ACP benefit makes it possible to get a free data plan and a free android tablet from the participating providers. Nonetheless, a household can only receive one monthly service discount and one device discount.
You can qualify to get Access Wireless free tablets based on your household income, participation in eligible government assistance programs, or if any of your household members is a lifeline beneficiary.
How to Qualify Based on Your Household Income
You can get a free government tablet and internet service if your household income is at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines. A household refers to a group of people who live together and share money. The household members do not have to be related. People who live together but do not share money such as those in an assisted-living home are separate households. The income guidelines for households vary by state and members. The ACP household income limit as per the 2022 Federal Poverty Guidelines includes:
|Household Size||Alaska||Hawaii||Other states and territories|
|Each additional person add:||$11,800||$10,860||$9,440|
How to Qualify Based on Participating in a Government Assistance Program
Qualifying for ACP is much easier if you are a participant in a government lifeline assistance program as you only need to show proof that you are a beneficiary to get a free government tablet. You only need to show a letter, card, or official document to demonstrate that you are a lifeline beneficiary.
The qualifying government assistance programs include:
- SNAP (Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program)
- SSI (Supplemental Security Income)
- WIC Special Supplemental Nutrition Program
- FPHA (Federal Public Housing Assistance)
- School Breakfast or Lunch Program
- Current award year Federal Pell Grant beneficiary
The Tribal assistance programs that make you eligible for ACP include:
- All eligible federal assistance programs
- Head Start
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
- Food Distribution on Indian Reservations
- Tribal TANF (Temporary Assistance for Needy Families)
Documents to Help You Show Proof of Eligibility for Access Wireless Free Tablets
Before you enrol in ACP program we advise that you first get all the documents necessary to show that you are eligible, depending on your eligibility method. You will need to show proof of income such as three consecutive pays stubs or tax returns if you are qualifying based on your income. Individuals who qualify by participating in a federal assistance program must show proof of current enrolment. The enrolment document should have your full legal name, issuing establishment, name of the qualifying program, and future expiration date, or issue date within the last 12 months. The qualifying documents you can use to show proof of eligibility include:
Proof of Income Documents
- Paycheck stub or current income statement
- Pension/retirement statement of benefits
- Veteran Administration statement of benefits
- Tribal or federal notice letter of General Assistance participation
- Social Security statements of benefits
- Workmen’s/Unemployment Compensation statement of benefits
- Last year’s federal, tribal, or state tax return
Proof of Participating in a Federal Government Program Documents
- Benefit award letter
- Statement of benefits
- Approval letter
- School documentation
- Benefit verification letter
Other Necessary Documents
- Photo ID proof such as valid government ID, Tribal ID, Military ID, State ID, Passport, and driver’s license
- Contact information
- Student information
- Residence proof
How to Apply for ACP Benefits
Once you have gathered the necessary documents, you can now proceed to apply for ACP to enable you to get a free android tablet from any participating provider. Use the following steps to receive your ACP benefits.
- Check if you qualify: Check if your household is eligible to receive ACP through income or participating in an eligible federal assistance program. If yes, then:
- Apply for ACP: You can apply online, by mail, or through an internet provider.
- Online: Go to affordableconnectivity.gov and fill out the application form to apply online.
- Mail: You can print and fill out the ACP application form and Household Worksheet and send them to ACP Support Center, P.O. Box 7081, London, KY 40742.
- Directly at a provider: Go to https://www.fcc.gov/affordable-connectivity-program-providers and choose an ACP provider offering a free tablet in your area. Visit the carrier’s website and fill out the ACP application form.
- Wait for approval: The time it takes to get your application approval depends on your method of approval. You may get immediate approval if you apply online. The government agency may also request additional information if it cannot confirm your eligibility automatically. Once you get the approval, you can choose a participating company that offers ACP and sign up for the free internet service.
How to Apply for Access Wireless Free Tablets
Access Wireless combines Lifeline and ACP benefits to offer affordable internet plans and a free device. The company offers a free smartphone as part of its plan, but you can get a tablet depending on the availability and the running campaign. Call Access Wireless customer care at 1-866-594-3644 before you fill out the application page to check the availability of a tablet in your location.
Once you find the Access Wireless free tablets available in your location, you can go ahead and apply for the ACP benefits. Access Wireless has a simple application process.
- Step 1: Visit Access Wireless and choose your location. You will need to enter your zip code to start the pre-enrolment process.
- Step 2: Choose your plan. You will find the available plans in your area upon entering the zip code. The plans vary by state. In California, Access Wireless has one Lifeline-only plan that features unlimited talk, unlimited text, and 6GB of data. Select the best plan for your internet and calling needs. Once you select a plan, you will get a prompt that asks if you have a device to use with your new plan.
- Step 3: Choose a device. You will have an option to bring your current phone or get a free Access Wireless phone. Choose the “No, I need a phone” option to make you eligible for Access Wireless free tablets.
- Step 4: Provide personal information. You will need to provide Access Wireless with your personal details and eligibility documents. Enter your email address to start the enrolment process and fill in all the required details to complete the application process.
- Step 5: Wait for approval. The approval will be immediate if you are already approved to receive ACP benefits. Nonetheless, the process can take 7 to 10 days before you get approval.
- Step 6: Activate your free tablet. Access Wireless will ship your device and give you instructions on how to activate your device. Follow the activation steps to start using the free internet service on your free Access Wireless tablet.
What ACP Benefits Do Access Wireless Subscribers Get
Eligible Access Wireless customers can benefit from both Lifeline and ACP. If you are already receiving Lifeline benefits, you should call a customer care representative to enrol in the ACP benefits. The ACP program allows you to get unlimited talk, unlimited text, unlimited data, and hotspot data. The unlimited data offer includes 15GB of high-speed data. Once you exhaust the high-speed data, you will continue to get internet at 256 kbps.
Where Else Can You Get a Free Tablet
If Access Wireless free tablets are not available in your location, you can look for other carriers that offer free tablets such as Qlink Wireless and Standup Wireless to ACP-eligible subscribers. You may also look for charities and non-profit organizations that donate free tablets to the needy such as The Salvation Army and Adaptive.org.
Some of the best Access Wireless free tablets alternatives include:
- Standup Wireless: As a nationwide ACP provider, Standup Wireless is a good Access Wireless alternative for people who live in areas where Access Wireless does not offer free tablets. The carrier offers a free monthly service and a discount on a connected device to customers eligible for ACP benefits.
- Q Link Wireless: Q Link Wireless is also a nationwide lifeline carrier that provides some of the latest government subsidized tablets to eligible households. Q Link Wireless offers some of the latest tablets with at least an 8-inch display and Bluetooth and Wi-Fi capabilities. Q Link Wireless ACP customers qualify for free monthly phone service with unlimited minutes, texts, and data.
- PCs for People: PCs for people organization is an option if you are not interested in a free phone plan. The non-profit organization offers a $100 discount to eligible ACP customers to purchase a refurbished connected device.
- Everyoneon: Everyoneon is a charity organization that offers its services in almost 50 states. The organization provides free refurbished tablets, internet services, and laptops to individuals from eligible households. However, your household must have an annual income of not more than $35,000 to get a free tablet from Everyoneon.
Although Access Wireless advertises a free smartphone as part of its ACP phone plan service, you may also get a tablet depending on the availability. Contact Access Wireless customer care at 1-866-594-3644 to find the available Access Wireless free tablets in your location. The carrier has a simple ACP application procedure that lets you start using free internet service on a free government device.
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