Shallotte, NC - ATMC recently announced that the communications cooperative will soon begin a multi-year, $100 million-dollar construction project to replace all of its copper and coaxial cable network within its Brunswick County service area with a new 100% fiber optic network. At the conclusion of this project, every cooperative member will have access to the company’s FOCUS Broadband fiber optic service with internet speeds up to one Gigabit.
Speaking at the company’s recent Annual Meeting of Members, CEO and General Manager, Keith Holden announced the project stating, “ATMC’s future is in providing our members and customers with the very best high-speed internet services possible. Because fiber optic technology has almost limitless capacity to transmit data, it can deliver speeds much faster than any other type of technology.” Holden added, “Converting our entire network to fiber optics will provide our members with unmatched capabilities well into the future.”
The project is expected to take up to eight years to complete and is slated to start in January of 2022. By constructing in the most densely populated communities first, the cooperative estimates that it can convert as many as 75% of homes and businesses to the new fiber optic network within the first 60 months.
Over the last four years, ATMC has worked to make fiber optic broadband available to over 12,000 addresses within the Brunswick County communities of St. James, Boiling Spring Lakes, Holden Beach and Ocean Isle Beach. These areas were previously served by a copper-only network capable of delivering a maximum of just 6 megabits per second (Mbps). As a result of the upgrade to fiber optics, these customers now have access to symmetrical gigabit internet speeds.
Over the past two years, ATMC has increased the maximum broadband speed delivered via its DOCSIS cable modem technology from 200 Mbps to 600 Mbps. Over 22,000 customers had their download speeds doubled without an increase in price. The project to convert to 100% fiber optics will allow customers currently served by DOCSIS cable modem technology to have even faster speeds with much greater reliability.
“The broadband needs of our members are evolving and upgrading to a 100% fiber optic network throughout our cooperative service area is part of our long-term strategy to ensure our members have the very best internet service anywhere,” added Holden. “This new network will be able to accommodate our members’ growing need for bandwidth-reliant applications, including video streaming, work from home, remote classroom, telehealth, gaming, and more. This project will enable ATMC to be well-positioned to take advantage of the incredible growth Brunswick County will experience over the next 10, 20 and 30 years,” said Holden.
ATMC will continue to update members on the status of this project as areas are upgraded. For more information, call 910-754-4311 or visit www.atmc.com.