AT&T networks have seen an increase in their use since companies in the United States asked their employees to work from home and schools moved online after the COVID-19 epidemic.
CEO Randall Stephenson said CNNBrian Stelter on today Reliable sources that “mobile volumes are up 40%” and “Wi-Fi call volumes are up 100%”. Stephenson added that the network infrastructure was “working quite well”, but noted that society is experiencing some stress as more and more people work from home.
AT&T currently has around 90,000 employees working from home, according to Stephenson. Stephenson added that given the number of people working at home and how it will change the future of work after the crisis is over, AT&T will “come out of this crisis”. [and] continue to invest in 5G and new technologies. ”
AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson on the demand for broadband and the Internet as more and more people work from home in the midst of the coronavirus epidemic: “We are seeing signs of stress. have to go out and do some of the network increase … works pretty well. ” pic.twitter.com/6IDS6RAjJ7
– Reliable sources (@ReliableSources) March 22, 2020
“I think it will get each company to assess how we do business,” said Stephenson. CNN when asked what happens when things start to go back to normal. “I think when we get out, that’s exactly what we’re going to see.”
Ensuring that everyone can stay connected at a time when people are physically isolated across the country is of the utmost importance to AT&T, said Stephenson. CNN. He noted AT & T’s earlier decision to suspend data capping for broadband Internet customers. AT&T broadband home Internet customers, who should not be confused with customers who have an AT&T mobile data plan, pay for plans that cap the amount of monthly data they can use. This affects devices like laptops, game consoles, smart TVs, etc.
One day after AT&T announced that it would suspend data limits, the FCC introduced a measure in the broadband telecommunications industry and called the Keep Americans Connected Pledge to prevent telecommunications companies like AT&T, Verizon and T-Mobile, among others, from abusing the current situation of working from home.
The undertaking requires businesses not to terminate the service for residential customers or small businesses, to waive late fees incurred due to the economic effects of the virus and to freely access public Wi-Fi hotspots. The commitment will cover the next 60 days and requests that other companies follow in the footsteps of AT&T and suspend the data caps.
“We view this as a time of war,” said Stephenson. “It’s like the Second World War. Everyone must step up and contribute to the way we help people in general. “
Update (March 22, 2:20 p.m. ET): An AT&T spokesperson added that AT&T is waiving national voice and data overage charges for customers in the country. The spokesperson said that these fees will be canceled retroactively, effective March 13.