The grant aims to increase broadband access and adoption by upgrading the existing telecommunications network serving these remote areas, according to the department.
The project is expected to connect more than 400 community institutions to the broadband network, including community colleges, schools, libraries, health-care facilities and public safety organizations.
Island Telephone and Engineering plans to use the grant to bring the first high-capacity broadband services to Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands. In addition to upgrading existing network infrastructure, IT&E plans to replace the existing inter-island transmission system using fiber, 3G wireless and WiMax technology.
The planned network is expected to enable government agencies, schools and businesses to benefit from videoconferencing and other advanced broadband capabilities.