During the tough times of the covid-19 pandemic, all the general activities that we would earlier do shifted to the online mode. Be it education or work, the world was forced to use technology and Data Services to continue with their lives. This is the time when many people realised the importance of technology now more than ever. However, not everyone can afford internet and the connected devices.
Considering the difficult situation all across the world and to help the Americans in these hard times, the US government announced the Emergency Broadband Benefits (EBB) program that would help low-income families and needy people to get free tablets and laptops along with free or discounted internet service plans. This was done to minimize the digital divide in the US and give as many people access to internet services as possible.
The EBB program was announced as a relief measure in the Covid-19 pandemic and was originally to terminate once the pandemic was over. But realizing the need for this vital program made the US government extend this EBB program under the name of the Affordable Connectivity Program ACP.
So, formerly known as the EBB program, is now known by the name ACP. A lot of network service providers all across the United States take part in the ACP program to offer free laptops and tablets to eligible households as well as free or discounted internet service plans. If you are willing to know more about this program, how you can apply for ACP, the eligibility criteria, and so on, then keep reading further.
What is the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP)?
Revisit a section
The Affordable Connectivity Program is an FCC benefit program that helps low-income families and less fortunate households to help them access network and telecommunication services for free or at affordable discounted prices. Through this program, eligible households can get monthly service discounts and one device discount per household.
This program was introduced as a replacement for the temporary EBB assistance program. The Emergency Broadband Benefits (EBB) program was announced by the government as a response assistance program to help low-income families and less fortunate people to get access to technology and smart devices in the Covid-19 pandemic.
With the ACP program, eligible households can get up to $30 discounts on monthly internet services whereas eligible households on tribal lands can get up to $75 discounts on monthly internet service plans. The program also offers $100 discounts on connected devices.
Anyone who is eligible for ACP can apply for the program by filling out an online application form. If your application is approved by the FCC, USAC, and the ACP authorities, then you can get a free tablet, laptop, or any of the other ACP benefits.
If you are willing to apply for this program, check the below-detailed guide that covers the eligibility criteria, documents required, the process on how to apply for ACP free tablet, and all the other necessary information about the Affordable Connectivity Program.
How to get an Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) Free Tablet?
Assuming that now you know the benefits of the Affordable Connectivity Program, you will be wondering how to apply for the ACP free tablet benefits program. The process to apply for the ACP program is quite simple and the eligibility criteria to are easy. To help you out with the process, here we have mentioned all the detailed information that you would require to apply for the program.
You can go through the eligibility criteria first to see if you meet the requirements to apply for this program and if you do then you can refer to the documents required section so as to keep all the documents ready with you while applying for ACP.
We have also included a step-by-step guide on how to apply for an affordable connectivity program with free tablet and laptop benefits. Make sure to go through it before you apply so as to get better clarity on the process and not make any mistakes throughout.
Eligibility for ACP Free Tablet or Laptop
Given below are the criteria of eligibility for the affordable connectivity program. The applicant or the household applying for the ACP program must meet any of the below requirements in order to qualify for ACP –
The household income should be at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Guidelines.
Any of the members of the household must be a participant in any of the Federal assistance programs such as –
- Lifeline assistance program
- Medicaid offers Free Tablet
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- The National School Lunch Program or the School Breakfast Program or the USDA Community Eligibility Provision
- Recipient of the Federal Pell Grant in the current year
- Federal Public Housing Assistance
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Veterans Pension or Survivor Benefits
- Applicant must be a participant of any of the tribal lands assistance programs such as – the Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance, Tribal Head Start, Tribal TANF, or Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations.
The applicant must meet the eligibility criteria for the participating provider’s already existing low-income internet services program.
Note that the criteria of eligibility for such programs might change frequently. So it is better that you refer to the official website of FCC to get the latest updates about the eligibility of the ACP program.
Documents required to apply for ACP Free Tablet or Laptop
When you are applying for DCP free tablet program, similar to any other government program, you will be required to provide documents as proof of all the information that you have mentioned. This is to ensure that all the information that you have mentioned is correct by verifying the documents.
This is an essential step for the authorities to make sure that no one is committing any sort of fraud or entering any false information and that the limited resources that are available to the authorities are given to those who are truly in need of it.
Note that all the documents you have submitted will be cross verified with the information in have entered in your online application form. So make sure to fill out the form carefully and do not enter any information that is incorrect. Otherwise, you will be barred from the ACP program.
Given below is a list of documents that you might require to say the least. Make sure to go through all these documents and keep them ready beforehand to avoid any last-minute mishaps.
|Eligibility Under||Documents required|
|Identity Documents as Proof (Mandatory for all)||
|Eligibility based on Government Assistance Programs||
|Eligibility based on Income||
How to Apply for Affordable Connectivity Program Free Tablet or Laptop?
If you want to apply for an ACP tablet or laptop, you can go for the easiest method by applying online on the official website of FCC ACP. The process is quite simple, you just have to visit the official website, fill in an application form, then create an account and submit your form along with the required documents.
Another way to apply for ACP free tablet benefits program is by mailing in your application and submitting it along with the copies of your original documents. Just make sure to fill in your application form with the utmost attention. Since any information you have entered will be verified later on with the documents provided.
There are two methods using which you can apply for ACP free tablets and laptops program. You can either use the official FCC ACP website to apply or alternatively you can directly apply for the ACP program from the ACB provider’s website. If you do not know of any ACP providers around you, you can check the official website of FCC to get a list of ACP providers near you.
Method 1. Apply for ACP through the official website
Given below are the easy steps you can follow to apply for ACP free tablet or laptop using the official website –
- Go to the official FCC ACP website at – acpbenefit.org/how-to-apply
- On this page, scroll down and select the option of ‘Apply Now.
- Now you will be redirected to the Lifeline National Verifier website. Here you will have to fill out the application form.
- Enter the basic details required to fill the application form such as your full name, date of birth, etc.
- You will be asked if you qualify dependently or independently. Choose whichever option suits your situation and then click on ‘Next’.
- Now you will be required to enter your Email and password so as to create an account on the Lifeline National Verifier.
- Then submit the documents that will prove your eligibility and also the basic identity proof documents. You can refer to the above “Documents required to apply for ACP Free Tablet or Laptop” section to see which documents you might require.
- Once you have submitted the documents and the form, wait for some time for approval.
- Look for a network service provider that participates in the ACP program near you and contact them and also the device and service plans that suit your needs.
Method 2. Applying directly through ACB providers’ website
- Go to the official website of your ACP service provider.
- If that service provider is participating in the ACP program, you will be able to fill out the ACP benefits application form through the official website of your service provider.
- Now enter the details asked for and submit the documents required so as to prove your eligibility for the program.
- You will be now required to choose a monthly cell phone service plan or device.
- Lastly, submit the application form and wait for approval from the authorities.
You can apply for ACP free laptop or tablet program using any of the above methods. Secure application is approved or declined, you will be notified by email or mail at your address.
Just note the key things here, not all the ECB service providers offer discounts and free tablets. Some might offer only connected devices free tablets and laptops while some might only offer free discounts on the monthly internet service plans. So when you are searching for ACP providers, make sure to look for a tick under the ‘offering connected devices’ title.
Another important thing to take care of is that all the information that you have provided in your application form will be cross verified as well as the documents will be checked thoroughly. So do not enter any information that is false or do not submit any fraud documents.
Which Tablets and Laptops are available for free Under the ACP?
After you have applied for the ACP free tablet program, you will be notified by the ACP service provider about the free service that you will be receiving and whether it will be a free tablet, laptop, smartphone for computer, or just the monthly cell phone service plan.
But the provider does not make any revelations about which device they will be offering you. The laptop or tablet that you will receive through ACP will depend on various factors Availability of devices with the service provider, etc.
In any case, you will certainly receive either a new or refurbished tablet or laptop that would include the basic features such as Wi-Fi, the latest Bluetooth, etc.
As of now the given below free ACP tablets and laptops are provided by the various ACP service providers under the ACP free tablet program –
- New Microsoft Surface Go 2
- Google Chromebook
- Samsung galaxy tab S7
- LG G pad 5- 4GB LTE Tab
- Lenovo Tab 5
Other Benefits of the Affordable Connectivity Program
Apart from free ACP tablets, there are various other benefits of the ACP program which have been mentioned below. If you are thinking twice to apply for ACP, then the below benefits can help you make a decision quickly.
- With the ACP, eligible households and needy people can get free high-end mobile phones, smartphones, tablets, laptops, etc. which can help many people get access to devices that can help them stay connected and Explore various opportunities through Internet Services.
- Not just that, but one can also receive up to a $100 discount while buying a laptop or computer.
- The ACP program can help you get unlimited talk time and text messages with national wide coverage in the US. You can get free or discounted Monthly cell phone service plans as well.
- Some of the ACP service providers also offer exclusive features of the latest Bluetooth, WiFi, mobile hotspot, and 5G high-speed data too.
- And lastly, the major benefit of the ACP program is that it helps in bridging the digital divide due to which many people cannot afford or access internet services and connectivity and consequently the opportunities that come with it.
Broadband Providers that Offer Free Tablets Under ACP Affordable Connectivity Program
There are a number of service providers across the United States that participate in the ACP Affordable Connectivity Program to help low-income families and needy people to get assistance in getting access to technology and devices such as laptops, tablets, computers, etc.
These service providers, in collaboration with the government, try to bridge the digital divide that occurs between people who can afford and use smartphones and internet connectivity and those who cannot. Most of the ACP service providers were participants of the EBB program as well. And some of the ACP providers are also participants in the Lifeline Assistance program.
The ACP service providers might change frequently. As of now, given below are some of the well-known ACP service providers that offer free tablets currently. You can check out the official websites of these service providers to get the updated details and information regarding the program and apply for ACP free tablet.
Assurance wireless is one of the most popular network service providers in the United States that is also a participant in the lifeline assistance program and ACP. One can get free or discounted tablets As well as free monthly cell phone service plans for Eligible households.
You can check out our detailed guide on how to apply for Assurance wireless free tablets
Q Link Wireless
Q Link Wireless is a well-known network service provider that operates in all the states of the US and is also a participant of the Affordable Connectivity Program ACP free tablets. Not just that but Q link wireless also offers amazing features such as the latest Bluetooth and Wi-Fi for just $10.
You can also get a free monthly cell phone service plan that comes with unlimited talk time, data, and text messages. You can enroll for Q-Link ACP free tablets on their official website at enroll.qlinkwireless.com/signup. You will be required to enter the basic information and submit the essential documents to fill out the online application form.
Or you can refer to our easy step-by-step guide on How to Get Free Tablet by Qlink Wireless.
Yet another well-known service provider in the United States is StandUp Wireless which was a participant of the EBB which is now known as the ACP program. This network provider offers ACP-free tablets in a majority of the states of the US.
Apart from the connected devices, one can also get free wireless service that includes unlimited talk time, text, 10GB of high-speed data, and unlimited low-speed data.
You can apply for a StandUp wireless ACP tablet on their official website at – standupwireless.com/acp. You will be able to apply using the ‘Apply Now’ option present on the website. From there you can fill out the online application form and enroll for ACB by submitting the required documents and entering the correct information.
Last but not least, Easy Wireless is a well-known service provider that participates in both the Lifeline assistance program as well as ACP to offer free tablets to Eligible households in the states of Missouri, Kentucky, and Oklahoma.
Not do they just offer free tablets or smartphones but Easy Wireless provider also offers free phone service that comes with unlimited talk time, text messages, and data as well as hotspot. Both of these are limited-time offers as a part of the ACP.
If you want to get Easy Wireless ACP free tablet, then you can visit their official website at – myeasywireless.com to enroll and fill out the online application to get assistance with free tablet and smartphone.
You will be required to provide all the basic information such as your name, date of birth, and ZIP code, as well as submit the required documents for proof.
Other network service providers such as Boost Mobile, AT&T, Cox Communications, Verizon wireless, Cintex wireless, etc. also offer free or discounted tablets and discounted monthly cell phone plans to eligible households.
Other Ways to Get a Free Tablet or Laptop
It goes without saying that not everyone would be eligible for the free tablet from government program. Such programs usually have a very strict criterion of eligibility since the resources available are limited in nature. Hence the government and the authorities want to ensure that the resources are being distributed amongst the people who are in genuine need of them.
It is quite obvious that not everyone would be eligible for these programs but they might be genuinely in the need of a tablet or smartphone. And so to help those people out, here we are sharing some of the other ways to get a free tablet or laptop. If you could not get assistance through the ACP program, then you can certainly seek help from the below-mentioned options.
Get a free tablet or laptop from a company
Various tablets, and laptops, as well as computer companies such as Microsoft, Apple, etc., provide numerous chances to people to get free or discounted tablets, laptops, and other such devices. These companies also have special discounts for students who wish to buy these devices.
You can keep up on the official notifications from these companies to get free tablets. Generally, these companies also conduct different giveaways for their followers. We would recommend you to follow the official social media handles of these companies on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook to get notified whenever they have a giveaway or discount offers going on.
If you could not get a free ACP tablet or are not eligible for the government free tablets program, then you can go for the other options such as charity organizations like Adaptive.org.
The organization extends help to low-income families, needy students, disabled people, veterans, etc. They offer not only free tablets but laptops and computers as well. You can either visit their official website or contact them.
Everyneon is a well-known non-profit organization that provides free tablets to needy people. The objective of the program is to help low-income families who cannot afford in staying connected with their loved ones as well as access various opportunities through internet services.
Charity or non-profit organization
A lot of non-profit, non-government organizations, and charities such as the Salvation Army, St. Vincent de Paul, Komputer for Kids, and so on offer free tablets and laptops to low-income families and less fortunate students.
There are various such charities all across the US that help many people get access to technology and internet services. You can apply for help at any of these charities. One or the other will most certainly help you.
Ask for help in the Local Church
Local Churches are one of the best places to seek help in any situation. Generally, churches receive donations from various people. These donations are either in the form of money or whatever the priests or father of the church asks for.
These Churches accept the donations received in any form and either uses them for their own purposes or donate these items to those in need of it. You can ask the nearby local Church and explain to them about your situation and why you need a tablet. We are sure that they will help you in every way they can.
Visit Public Library
If you are looking for a free laptop or tablet and you are a student, then the best place for you to get free tablet access is a public library. If you are looking for a laptop or tablet to work on your assignments or study, then public libraries generally have a free internet connection and laptop services as well.
All you have to do is visit your nearby public library and enquire if they have free internet services as well. The plus point of this method to get access to tablet and internet connectivity is you also get access to a number of books that you can refer to for studying and education purposes.
Look for refurbished Laptops
There are numerous laptop and other electronics repair shops that sell refurbished or second-hand laptops, tablets, as well as smartphones at a cheaper price or Free. So even if you could not get free tablet ACP, you can search in these stores for refurbished devices.
Many people who wish to sell their older devices also keep their devices for sale in such repair shops. You can visit the nearby electronics repair shop to get more information.
Check out websites like Freecycle, Craigslist
There are a lot of websites, various online portals, as well as thrift stores that offer free tablets for laptops at discounted for cheap prices. A lot of people wish to sell their older devices such as laptops, tablets, smartphones, etc.
Hence these people put up their products on websites such as Craigslist, freecycle, and so on for sale. And those in need of these devices can buy second-hand items at a much cheaper price. You should definitely check these websites constantly to grab the best offers available.
Make use of Social Media
Social media is the answer to a number of questions nowadays. One can find solutions to almost any problem over this platform. Social media helps to connect people through various means. You can get free tablets, smartphones, laptops, and so on by participating in giveaways or posting for and searching your requirements.
Given below are some of the most commonly asked questions regarding the ACP program. You can go through these questions to get more clarity on the same.
Are EBB and ACP the Same?
It can be said that the EBB program and ACP are both the same since the ACP program was introduced as a replacement for the EBB program.
The EBB program was launched with the motive to help low-income families to get access to internet and technology services during the tough times of the covid-19 Pandemic.
However, the program was to be closed once the pandemic was over. With the government to the decision to continue the EBB program under the title of ACP.
Why is the ACP replacing the EBB program?
As mentioned earlier, the program was launched specifically for the duration of the Covid pandemic as a relief program. But since the program proved to be quite an essential one for the citizens of the US, the government decided to continue the program and extend it under the name of ACP.
Why is the Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) Program ending?
The EBB program was a relief program that was of temporary nature and was supposed to terminate once the Covid-19 pandemic was over. However since the program has proved to be very helpful for a lot of Americans, the government has decided to continue the program by extending it under the ACP.
Does My ACP Free Tablet Come With a Warranty?
Yes, in most cases ACP free tablets come with a warranty. Generally, the warranty period is 12 months but at most, it can reach over a 5-year warranty for a handset. You can expect a warranty for accessories.
Can I Choose My ACP Provider?
Yes, you can choose your ACP provider. You can check the official website of FCC at https://www.fcc.gov/affordable-connectivity-program-providers where you will find a list of the ACB providers in your area.
You can also directly apply at the official website of ACP and then contact your ACP provider to choose a plan and get discounts on your monthly bills.
How is Lifeline different from the ACP?
The Lifeline Assistance Program is a permanent program of the FCC that helps low-income families to get affordable communication services such as broadband Data Services. Whereas the ACP is an extension of the temporary EBB program.
It is possible for the eligible households to combine the benefits of both the Lifeline and ACP programs into the same service plan or you can also apply the benefits of these two programs to different service plans. The participants of the Lifeline program can take ACP benefits from a different service provider.
If I already receive Lifeline benefits will I automatically receive the ACP benefit?
No, if you are a lifeline participant you will not automatically receive the benefits of ACP. You will have to apply for the Affordable Connectivity Program differently and choose a service plan that suits your needs and for which you are eligible.
Can I get a Free Tablet or Laptop another way – Other than through the ACP Program?
Yes, there are numerous other ways to get a free tablet or laptop other than the ACP program. There are a lot of service providers that participate in EBB and Lifeline Assistance programs.
Also, you can get free tablets or laptops through various Charity organizations, websites such as Freecycle or Craigslist, or even through social media giveaways.
Which Areas are Covered by the Affordable Connectivity Program?
The affordable connectivity program ACP covers all the States and territories of the United States. You can visit the official website of FCC to get the full list of ACP providers in all the states. Just know that not all the providers will offer free tablets in all the states. So make sure to keep updated with this information.
That was it all about the ACP free tablet and laptop program. A program that was initially launched as a relief measure against Covid-19 proved to be so essential for so many people across the US that the government extended it to make it a permanent program.
Apart from the Lifeline Assistance Program, now eligible households can also apply for ACP to get free tablets and laptops as well as various discounts on monthly cell phone service plans.
We hope that the above article clarified all the doubts you had regarding ACP and helped you in applying for the program. In case there is anything you want to ask us about ACP, then feel free to comment down below and we will get back to you soon.