Internet cord plugged into a server. Broadband companies have started to offer free wifi as a public service. PUBLIC DOMAIN

Several broadband companies are offering free wifi to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Companies are offering different policies that range from opening up hotspots to noncustomers and providing wifi for students affected by the COVID-19 crisis. Different companies cover different areas — provides an overview of which companies offer wifi at zip codes around the country.

In Stony Brook specifically, options include Verizon Fios and Optimum.

Optimum is a service offered by Altice USA, which is offering free wifi until May 15 to new households with K-12 and college students who were displaced after school closures, or lack home internet access. Students interested in enrolling in the Optimum region should call 866-200-9522.

Students in the Suddenlink region, which is also offered through Altice, should call 888-633-0030 for free wifi. The broadband company covers states in the southeast, midwest, west and on the West Coast.

Altice will waive late fees and continue services to residents and small businesses who miss payments, as well as open hot spots to noncustomers.

Verizon is not offering free internet access, but it’s waiving late fees for residential and small business customers affected by COVID-19.

Charter Spectrum is also offering free wifi to households with college students who don’t already have a subscription until May 15. The company does not cover Long Island, but it does cover other New York regions — including New York City. Students interested in using the service should call 1-844-488-8395. Charter will not charge an installation fee.


Xfinity from Comcast offers coverage in 39 states, with the broadest coverage in California, Florida and Illinois. Xfinity is opening up its hotspots to noncustomers and will waive late fees and continue services to customers who miss payments until May 13.

Low-income families who sign up as new customers for Xfinity Internet Essentials will receive 60 days of free service before they need to start paying the required $9.95 a month.

Xfinity does not cover Long Island.

AT&T Wireless offers services in all 50 states, with the broadest coverage in New York, California and Texas. The company is suspending broadband usage caps for home internet customers, opening up hotspots to noncustomers, waiving late fees and continuing services to customers who miss payments.


Brianne Ledda is a senior journalism major minoring in history and environmental studies. She started writing for the Statesman's News Section in her first few weeks at Stony Brook University, and was promoted to Editor-in-Chief at the end of the Spring 2020 semester. You can contact Brianne via email at [email protected]


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