Broadband Ready: Read the new article in the latest issue of Alaska Business Magazine.

News

July 2022 – Article in Alaska Business Magazine—Broadband Ready—Nonprofits, tribes, and businesses bring reliable internet to rural Alaska

An article in the latest issue of Alaska Business Magazine discusses the exact problems Alaska faces with internet access, and why solutions like the ATN are the only answer for near-term relief.

“We have the answer, we just need the funding,” — Jim Berlin, General Manager, ATS

Please read the article and share with friends and colleagues. The more the piece is viewed, the more widespread and reposted it becomes. It helps all of us to get this message out. Sharing it on Facebook and other social media is also extremely helpful.

March 15, 2022 – FCC awards Alaska Tribal Spectrum (ATS) with essential building block to establish the Alaska Tribal Network in 103 native communities

On March 15th, 2022 the FCC granted 2.5 GHz license number WRPT585 to the tribally managed Alaska Tribal Spectrum (ATS) nonprofit. This represents the FCC’s largest single 2.5 GHz spectrum award in America. The ATS management footprint represents an area 85% the size of Texas, or a little bigger total area than New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Hampshire, Delaware, Massachusetts, and Indiana combined.

Read the press release here.

March 2022 – Opinion piece in Anchorage Daily News calls for funding language to prefer satellite for rural Alaska

An important opinion piece from the Alaska Tribal Administrators Association was published this month in the Anchorage Daily News: Only Tribes can Bridge the Rural Alaska Digital Divide

The message of this piece is that satellite is needed for rural Alaska, and that funding language should prefer it for rural Alaska. This is a message that ATS wholeheartedly endorses. We believe it is the only way relief is coming anytime soon to rural Alaska.

Please read the article and comment if you like. The more the piece is viewed, the more widespread and reposted it becomes. It helps all of us to get this message out. Sharing it on Facebook and other social media is also extremely helpful.

November 2021 – ATS provides comments on the draft Governor’s Task Force on Broadband

ATS provided comments on the draft Governor’s Task Force on Broadband that emphasized the importance of tribal control of 2.5 GHz spectrum and how it can be retained by the tribes to maintain tribal digital sovereignty. The comments also stressed the importance of GEO, MEO and LEO satellite access to supply all tribes in rural Alaska with service now in areas where fiber will not be appearing anytime soon. 

Read the comments here.

September 2021 – ATS submits application for significant grant subsidies to fund the Alaska Tribal Network

Alaska Tribal Spectrum (ATS) is a Tribally controlled and managed nonprofit that manages the Tribal 2.5 GHZ spectrum for over 100 members across Alaska. ATS submitted a grant on September 1, 2021 to the NTIA to establish the Alaska Tribal Network to bring affordable satellite based broadband combined with advanced LTE 4G/5G ORAN last mile infrastructure for every ATS applicant village representing over 13,000 households. The ATN will bring considerable benefits for broadband and phone service for true mobility if the grant is awarded. ATS has an open invitation to any village to join ATS as a member and participate in the ATN. The ATN provides revenue to each member Tribe for the use of the 2.5 GHz spectrum and ensures Tribal choice for everything on the network, as well as many other benefits to all member villages.

The NTIA has indicated it will begin the award process by year end 2021.

August 3, 2021 – Press Release: Alaska Tribal Spectrum plans to bring affordable broadband to all of rural Alaska via the Alaska Tribal Network

Excerpt: “In many rural Alaska Tribal villages, the best internet is at the school or health clinic. Many rely on old slow-style satellite connections that are highly subsidized. As a result, everyone else with no subsidy has expensive rates. Cell phone service in these communities is unreliable. Because conditions in Alaska make extending fiber so expensive, fiber isn’t arriving any time soon in these rural areas. Rural Alaska needs help now, so current generations can get relief.”…

Read more in the full press release (PDF)

May 2021 – ATS invites all Tribes to add their spectrum and join in the ATS NTIA Grant Application for a statewide ATN to deliver “Broadband For All” in Alaska and Maximize Tribal Spectrum Revenue.

Funding the installation of standardized last mile ATN equipment is the ATS mission, but without a connection to affordable middle mile, the job of making your spectrum more valuable is not complete. It’s basically useless unless there is affordable broadband available so people will use it, and use it a lot. That is why ATS is inviting all Tribes to join us as one large multi-member application for NTIA grant funding that will deliver advanced satellite middle mile to feed the ATN and drive down the price for broadband everywhere in the state. In turn this makes your spectrum in Alaska much more valuable everywhere.

With support from the Denali Commission, ATS is applying for NTIA funding with as many Tribes as possible. ATS is inviting all Tribes to add their spectrum to expand the statewide ATN footprint to offer compelling value for upcoming NTIA grant funding. Not only will this make our spectrum more attractive to providers statewide, but we likely will receive a much larger collective NTIA award to fund the ATN installations in all of our communities. 

May 2021 – ATS Announces Plans for Statewide Alaska Tribal Network.

The Alaska Tribal Network, when funded, will supply a ubiquitous, standards based last mile network that every Tribe can use to design a forward looking mobility capable network that can deliver broadband. A unified ATN offers many benefits for all participants in Alaska. The ATN model will also solve the middle mile problem for rural Alaska by making broadband affordable in the near term for rural Alaskans everywhere. ATS is focused on fundraising to install ATN infrastructure and enable affordable broadband for its entire Tribal membership and is inviting every Tribe in Alaska to Join ATS to extend the ATN statewide to benefit all Tribes.

December 2020 – USDA Community Connect Grant Application.

In Dec 2020, Alaska Tribal Spectrum applied for a Community Connect Grant for five villages in the Bristol Bay Region to enable quality Broadband. The application included an innovative ATS last mile wireless design. If funded, the five villages could be broadband-enabled in 2021.

August 5, 2020 – The FCC 2.5 Application is submitted.

Alaska Tribal Spectrum submitted an FCC 2.5 application for an area covering 85 Tribal communities throughout Alaska.

After the license is awarded, the Alaska Tribal Spectrum will manage the spectrum with the input, and to the collective benefit, of all of its Tribal members. How the spectrum is applied for use by each member Tribe will be controlled by the member Tribal leadership. 

July 2020 – Alaska Tribal Spectrum is Born.

Thanks to a grant from the Denali Commission, the Alaska Tribal Spectrum was established as a non-profit consortium to carry out its initial application mission. A website is established combined with massive outreach to offer a greatly simplified ability to reserve 2.5 GHz spectrum for the members across Alaska.