broadband Internet

Demand for internet access has shifted from workplaces to residential ones during the coronavirus pandemic, as more adults are working from home and some students are expected to continue their classwork online.

Updated at 5:49 p.m. ET

More people are shifting to the digital world as life outside the home is put on hold. That's putting a lot of pressure on companies to keep connections up when all their employees are trying to telework at the same time. It's also posing challenges for Internet video conferencing services.

In South Korea and Italy in recent weeks, people stuck in their homes are using the Internet a lot more.

Libraries around the country are increasingly starting to lend out mobile hotspot devices for patrons to connect to high-speed internet at home.

Democratic Rep. Grace Meng of New York wants to see this effort expanded and has proposed a new bill that would provide grant money for more mobile hotspots in communities, particularly so students who don’t have internet at home can do their homework.

Rural communities around the country often lack broadband connectivity.

But in Wyoming, the Eastern Shoshone and the Northern Arapaho Tribes have been working to bring high speed internet to their reservation. They’ve started their own telecommunications business to make it happen.

Nestled among turquoise blue waterfalls and cottonwood trees, the tiny Havasupai reservation is accessible only by foot, by mule or by helicopter. It's a five-minute flight from the rim of the Grand Canyon to Supai Village on the canyon floor, where 450 tribal members live in small homes made of panel siding and materials that can be easily hauled or lifted in.

It's no wonder Internet access has been a challenge. But recently, the Havasupai have had some help from the Oakland-based nonprofit MuralNet.

Berlin's flourishing tech scene attracts talent from across the globe. At a startup incubator in the western part of the city, an international team recently launched an app called SPRT, which connects sports enthusiasts.

Amy Cooper, a 20-year-old SPRT employee who moved to Germany from Britain last June, complains that Berlin's Internet speed is so slow, it feels like the old dial-up days she has heard her parents reminisce about.

Just over half of Native Americans living on American Indian reservations or other tribal lands with a computer have access to high-speed Internet service, according to new estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau.

The low rate of subscription to a high-speed Internet service — 53 percent — in these often rugged, rural areas underscores the depth of the digital divide between Indian Country and the rest of the U.S. Between 2013 and 2017, 82 percent of households nationally with a computer reported having a subscription to a broadband Internet service.

Cuba's state telephone company will allow mobile phone customers to use the Internet via a new 3G network, starting on Thursday. But as with previous tech advances in the island nation, only those who can afford it will be able to take advantage of the access — which remains under the control of the autocratic government.

You're reading NPR's weekly roundup of education news.

Report: Most schools now have high-speed internet access

40.7 million students have gained access to high-speed Internet over the last five years. That's according to EducationSuperHighway, a nonprofit dedicated to closing the digital divide in American classrooms. There are still 2.3 million students unconnected, according to the group's most recent annual report.

The city of Fort Collins, Colo., will build a system to deliver "high speed next-generation broadband to the entire community," after its City Council enacted a ballot initiative that voters approved in November. The move comes despite resistance from cable and telecom companies.

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