A week after becoming West Virginia's largest phone company, Frontier Communications says they are going to expand high-speed Internet across the state, according to CEO Maggie Wilderotter.

West Virginia is 47th in the USA in providing broadband, and much of the broadband in the state is at the low-end of the "high-speed" scale.

The government has few standards regarding the delivery of high-speed, and providers have taken advantage of being able to advertise the service because of the broad definition.

Wilderotter says Frontier technicians have identified areas where transmission cables need to be connected and within weeks, some neighborhoods in West Virginia are expected to have access to high-speed broadband for the first time.

A call to Frontier's public information department to confirm what broadband expansion means to Calhoun County and other regional rural counties has gone unanswered.

The Herald is seeking details regarding expansion and improvements to be made in Calhoun and other rural counties.

"We're going to spend millions to bring high-speed Internet to neighborhoods that don't have it and increase speeds for those who already have it," said Wilderotter.

Frontier, which purchased the landlines in 14 states as part of an $8.6 billion deal, now has more residential and small-business customers in West Virginia than in any other state.

Wilderotter promised that Frontier would bring high-speed Internet to 85 percent of customers within three years.

Verizon offered high-speed broadband to about 60 percent of its West Virginia customers.

"We know how to deliver broadband to less-dense areas. I think that customers have been waiting for someone to come in who really cares about this state. That's who we are, and that's not the way it was before," said Wilderotter.

Frontier plans to place yard signs in neighborhoods to let people know where the company has expanded broadband.

Frontier will send technicians to customers' homes to install a broadband connection and wireless router.


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