Covid 19 pandemic brought many disruptions to individuals, families, and businesses. People had to stay indoors to help curb the spread and reduce hospitalisations, which were overwhelming the health care systems. In an effort to help people stay indoors, the government partnered with broadband carriers to offer affordable mobile plans to low-income families through the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021. In response, AT&T as a participating provider offered an emergency broadband benefit program AT&T plan that allowed low-income households to enjoy high-speed Internet at lower prices.
Following the success of the emergency broadband benefit program AT&T plans and other programs by other carriers, the government decided to create a long-term broadband benefit program, the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). The new ACP program seeks to offer a long-term affordable broadband solution to power the connections family need for work, health care, and school.
What Changes to Expect From Your Emergency Broadband Benefit Program AT&T
The Affordable Connectivity Program has replaced the Emergency Broadband Benefit program as of December 31, 2021. Therefore, all customers interested in the government-discounted affordable Internet plans have to apply for Affordable Connectivity Program AT&T plans. Customers already enrolled in the Emergency Broadband Benefit program continued to enjoy their benefits for a 60-day transition period, upon which they had to enroll in the ACP program. Customers who failed to apply for the ACP program by March 1, 2022, saw their Emergency Broadband Benefit program discontinued.
Customers who qualified for the program saw their Emergency Broadband Benefit program AT&T plans discounted by up to $50 per month and up to $75 for households on Tribal lands. Eligible households could receive a one-off discount of up to $100 to buy a laptop, desktop, or tablet from participating providers, but they had to contribute between $10 and $50 towards the purchase. The program had a limit of one device discount and one monthly service discount per eligible household.
The changes that come with the ACP program include:
- The monthly benefit reduces from a maximum of $50 to $30 per month. However, families in Tribal Lands will continue to receive a maximum of up to $75
- Customers on the Emergency Broadband Benefit program AT&T plans have to re-qualify for ACP to continue receiving the discounted plans
- Qualifying requirements changed from a substantial loss of income. Customers now have to show their income is below the 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines or are a beneficiary of other assistive programs.
What Does AT&T Offer as a Replacement for the EBB Program
Despite the discontinuation of the Emergency Broadband Benefit program, AT&T still helps to bridge the digital divide in the country through the federal Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). ACP allows qualified low-income families to enjoy reliable, high-speed AT&T internet and save up to $30 on their monthly bills. Some customers may even qualify for free Internet or wireless service. Eligible AT&T customers living on the Tribal Lands qualify for up to $75 per month.
Choosing the AT&T ACP program enables you to enjoy the unlimited plans that offer unlimited, talk, text, and data across the US, Canada, and Mexico. It also allows you to use one of the largest 5G networks in the country, which ensures fast, reliable, and secure connections across the major cities and towns. Eligible customers with 5G compatible devices further get the ActiveArmor, which offers 24/7 proactive network security.
However, AT&T does not determine ACP eligibility. You have to apply with a government agency, affordable connectivity. Once you apply, save your Application ID to help you speed up your ACH program application. AT&T recommends that you call 888-721-1906 once you get the approval to enroll for ACP with your National Verifier application ID. Customers already approved for Lifeline do not need to re-apply for the ACP as they are automatically eligible. Contact AT&T if you already have a lifeline for the carrier to verify it and apply for your ACP benefit.
What Internet Plans Does AT&T Offer to ACP Approved Customers
The ACP benefit is applicable on all AT&T Internet plans and the benefit will remain on your account even after upgrading your service. If the plan you choose costs more than your ACP benefit, you will pay the balance. If the plan’s undiscounted price is less than your discounted amount, you will enjoy free Internet.
AT&T Prepaid plans with ACP benefits
- Free 5GB data plan with ACP: The 5GB data plan costs $30 per month without ACP benefits. Customers who qualify for the Affordable Connectivity Program get the plan at no cost as the ACP $30 benefit is equivalent to the AT&T price. The plan comes with unlimited talk, text, and 5GB of high-speed data. Other features that come with the Free 5GB Data plan with ACP include rollover data, mobile hotspot, unlimited text to over 230 countries, standard-definition streaming, and fraud call blocking.
- $10 15GB Data plan: ACP qualified customers will get the $40 per month 15GB data plan at $10 per month after application of the $30 ACP benefit. The plan offers unlimited talk, text, and 15GB of high-speed data. Other features include standard-definition streaming, mobile hotspot, rollover data, unlimited talk and text to Canada and Mexico, use data, text and talk in Canada and Mexico, fraud call blocking, and unlimited text to over 250 countries.
- $20 Unlimited Max: The AT&T Unlimited Max is available at $65 per month without a discount. Customers who qualify for ACP will pay $35 a month for the plan, but they can reduce the cost further to $20 per month with AutoPay. The plan comes with unlimited high-speed data, but AT&T may temporarily slow data after 22GB of data usage during peak times. Other features that come with a $20 per month AT&T unlimited Max ACP plan with AutoPay include unlimited talk, text, 5G access, 100GB of cloud storage, and 10GB of mobile hotspot data. You also enjoy HD streaming, standard-definition streaming, unlimited usage in Canada and Mexico, and a mobile hotspot data add-on of 5GB at $10.
AT&T Prepaid Tablet and Hotspot Data Plans With ACP Benefits
AT&T customers living on Tribal land will get the eligible plans at no cost with ACP. The tablet hotspot data plans with ACP will cost $5 per month for 15GB of data and $25 per month for 100GB of data. The 15GB data plan will cost $35 per month without ACP while the 100GB plan will cost $55 without ACP benefits.
AT&T Unlimited Plans with ACP benefits
You will need a 5G device to fully enjoy the AT&T high-speed data. Furthermore, the ACP benefits will start within two bills and the AT&T may require a credit card. The prices of the AT&T unlimited plans with ACP are after the application of the ACP benefit, paperless billing discount, and AutoPay.
- $35 AT&T Unlimited Starter plan: The AT&T Unlimited Starter plan is available at $35 per month without discounts for four lines but ACP-eligible customers get it at $27.50 per month for lines with ACP benefits applied. The plan offers unlimited data, talk, and text, but AT&T may temporarily slow data speeds during peak times. It also comes with 5G access, 3GB of hotspot data per line, an AT&T ActiveArmor mobile security plan, six months of Stadia Pro streaming, and standard-definition streaming.
- $32.50 AT&T Unlimited Extra Plan: The Unlimited Extra plan will cost you $40 per month for four lines without discounts and ACP benefits. With ACP benefits and AutoPay discounts, the plan cost lowers to $32.50 per month per line for four lines. The plan comes with unlimited data, text, and talk. You get 50GB of premium data after which AT&T may temporarily slow data speeds during peak times. It also features 5G access with a compatible device; AT&T ActiveArmor advanced security app, and 15GB of hotspot data per line. Other highlights include standard-definition streaming, six months of Stadia Pro streaming, and unlimited data, talk, and text in and between Canada and Mexico.
- $42.50 Unlimited Premium plan: The Unlimited Premium plan costs $50 per month per line for four lines without ACP benefit. ACP-approved customers enjoy a discounted price of $42.50 per month per line for four lines once AT&T applies ACP benefits and other applicable discounts. The plan allows you to enjoy unlimited data, talk, and text in and between the US, Canada, and Mexico. It supports 4K UHD streaming, six months of free Stadia Pro streaming, and 50GB of hotspot data per line per month. Customers on this plan are not subject to slowed data speeds during peak times.
Although AT&T no longer offers the Emergency Broadband Benefit program AT&T plans following the government discontinuation of the program, low-income families continue to enjoy discounted AT&T plans with the ACP program benefits. The ACP program offers benefits of up to $30 per month and up to $75 per month for individuals in the Tribal lands.
People Also Ask
No. The government discontinued the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program (EBB) on December 31, 2021, and replaced it with the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP). Customers already enrolled on the EBB had 60 days to transition to the new ACP program.
EBB program offered benefits of up to $50 per month and up to $75 to those on Tribal lands, but the ACP offers up to $30 and up to $75 per month to those on Tribal lands.
Yes. You have to requalify for ACP to continue receiving benefits.
No. The program is limited to one monthly benefit per household. You will not receive benefits for your internet plan if you are already receiving the benefits on your wireless plan.