December 8, 2015
Anchorage, Alaska – General Communication (GCI), Inc., Alaska’s largest Internet provider, today announced the completion of the Municipality of Anchorage portion of the 1-gigabit project and introduced plans to bring the lightning fast Internet service to more residents of the Matanuska Valley in just a few weeks.
GCI’s 1 GIG red Internet operates at speeds of up to 1-gigabit-per-second—among the highest level of Internet speed available to consumers in the U.S. While pockets of the service exist in many other cities nationwide, Anchorage is one of the few places where 1 gigabit is available citywide. Projected in September this year, GCI launched 1 GIG red and announced completion of the citywide build-out on Nov. 27, when GCI celebrated red Friday to mark the occasion. The Anchorage 1 GIG red project covers a 1.2 million-acre area, nearly twice the size of Rhode Island, and is believed to be the largest 1-gigiabit-service area in the United States.“GCI’s 1 GIG red is the first of its kind in Alaska, and on a consumer basis it offers some of the fastest Internet available anywhere in the country," said GCI president and CEO Ron Duncan. “Businesses love it, and families who are streaming large amounts of data simultaneously are benefitting from the new services as well. It’s a win for all Alaska residents, and we are thrilled to launch in other areas of the state in 2016.”
The service, now available throughout the state’s largest city, from Eagle River to Anchorage to Girdwood, brings high speed Internet to over 40 percent of Alaska’s 736,732 residents. With the January launch of the service in areas such as Wasilla and Palmer, and the upcoming launches in Juneau and Fairbanks, more than 50 percent of Alaska’s population will have access to speeds up to 1 gigabit before end of summer 2016.For perspective, in terms of the overall reach of the available service, in Anchorage, GCI is now providing 1-gigabit-Internet speeds to an area 22 and 30 times larger than major cities such as Boston and Washington D.C., respectively, where consumers are still waiting for comparable service.
“It’s essentially twice as fast as Los Angeles’ best Internet. Better than Boston, better than Washington D.C., better than a lot of states in the Lower 48,” said Eagle River resident Cory Williams, vlogger for DudeLikeHELLA, a popular Youtube vlog that has more than 220,000 subscribers. Williams has been using GCI’s 1 GIG red service in Eagle River since September 2015. “I uploaded a 1.4-gig file, and it took 7 minutes to upload. In Los Angeles, this file would have taken at least 40 minutes to upload.”
GCI will expand to select communities statewide in 2016 as the company lays the groundwork for next-generation technology infrastructure. Areas such as Wasilla and Palmer are expected to have 1 GIG red in the coming weeks, and Fairbanks and Juneau will have speeds up to 1 gigabit later in the year. The enhanced Internet speeds are up to 100 times faster than the current national average, and as technology progresses GCI is preparing Alaska to be a leader in high-speed Internet.
“As an Alaska-based company we’re invested in the future of the state,” said Duncan. “We know from past experience that innovation starts at home. We’re building a network that can support new developments in technology and foster all of the components of a successful state economy.”A special new cable modem, which GCI is providing to all red Internet customers at no charge, is required to achieve speeds up to 1 GIG and 500 Mbps. Along with increased speeds, GCI is also offering Alaskans the ability for multiple users to download at the same time without experiencing noticeably decreased download speeds. This is important to everyone from major corporations to families looking to stream to multiple devices at one time.
To celebrate the launch of 1 GIG red in the Valley, a special customer appreciation event will be held at GCI’s Wasilla store, 1879 E. Parks Highway, on Saturday, Jan. 16, featuring giveaways and guest appearances by twin Iditarod racers Anna and Kristy Berington. Customers will be able to snap photos with the twins, their sled and meet the newest sled dog puppies on their team.Since 1979, GCI has invested over $3 billion to bring the latest telecommunication technologies to Alaska, reflecting GCI’s ongoing commitment to the innovation Alaska needs to support industry, education, health care, job growth and livability for today and the future.
More information about GCI’s 1 GIG red Internet service can be found at gci.com/internet/1GIG.
GCI is the largest Alaska-based and –operated, integrated telecommunications provider, offering wireless, voice, data, and video services statewide. Learn more about GCI atwww.gci.com.