Without being able to rely on Wi-Fi in the home, however, it's easy for people to blaze through monthly data allotments, so 3GB of free high-speed LTE data per month would likely be welcome in many low-income households. Sprint is part of this multiyear initiative to provide free mobile devices and free internet to one million low-income high school students in the country.
Specifically, Sprint is hoping to help underpriviliged students who can't afford to have internet access at home. According to the Pew Research Center, 5 million families with school-age children in the USA don't have access to high-speed internet.
Sprint CEO Marcelo Claure said in a conference call with reporters that the company's 1Million Project would act as "a way to help bridge the homework gap" for children in millions of United States households that lack internet access. Unlimited data will be available at 2G speeds if a student's usage exceeds the 3GB a month. This divide leads to the "homework gap" in which low-income students are at an disadvantage because they do not have the tools needed to complete homework, communicate with teachers, or apply for jobs, scholarships, or colleges. "That's exactly what we're doing with the one million project".
This is where Sprint comes in. President Obama's ConnectED and My Brothers Keeper program lead the project. Distribution will be achieved through partnerships with EveryoneOn and My Brother's Keeper Alliance, which will help recruit community organizations to deliver the devices and activate service for participating students. To help cover costs, Sprint will solicit donations of cash, phones and other mobile devices from sources including manufacturers, employee charity drives and customers trading in old devices, Chief Executive Officer Marcelo Claure said at the event. It will begin as a pilot program in January 2017 in seven to 10 cities, and will roll out nationally when the 2017 to 2018 school year begins.