For over 15 years, Advanced Communications Technology, Inc. (ACT) has provided residents of Wyoming and Montana with telecommunications solutions for their homes and businesses. Starting in 1997 in Forsyth, Montana, the company moved to the thriving community of Sheridan, Wyoming in 2001. Among the company's numerous partnerships is an arrangement with the National Rural Telecommunications Cooperative (NRTC) to bring broadband internet access to rural areas.
As a subsidiary of the Range Telephone Cooperative, ACT serves over 32,000 homes, with a coverage area of over 6,300 square miles in both Wyoming and southern Montana. In 2001, the company finished installing a fiber optic network connecting the Montana Vision Net system with the major network hubs in Casper, Wyoming's second-largest city. ACT also covers some portions of western South Dakota and northern Utah.
With thousands of acres, and often less than ten people occupying each square mile, the region known as ?Big Sky Country? often lacks the infrastructure to carry telephone lines, coaxial cables and fiber optic lines across such vast spaces. ACT and its NRTC partners are bringing the benefits of high-speed internet access to these isolated locations. The fiber optic lines are much lighter and require less impact on the natural beauty of the region, while still providing broadband access to the area's farmers, ranchers and business owners.
ACT relies on the power of the digital subscriber line (DSL) to deliver high-speed internet connections to its customers. Most customers can access the DSL connection from their existing home system without the need for re-wiring or installing a network node. ACT provides its customers with a DSL modem, which transmits the signals between the computer and the phone line through the computer's network interface card (NIC).
ACT gives its customers more than a pipeline to the internet. The company's team of expert technicians helps users with a wide range of services.
- SecureIT is a powerful software package that protects computers from viruses, spyware, malware, and other dangerous programs. Users can install it themselves, or an ACT service representative can guide them through the process. ACT also provides 24/7 support for an additional monthly fee.
- Online backup services preserve data from viruses, software issues and hardware damage. Users can subscribe to store up to 250 GB of data per month.
- Modem protection insurance allows customers to have their modem repaired or replaced in the event of damage, defect or power surge.
Each of ACT's residential high-speed access plans comes with up to five e-mail boxes, with download speeds starting at 1.5 Mbps and upload speeds starting at 768 kbps.
High Speed Internet (with Basic Local Phone Service):
- Plan I: 1.5Mbps Download/768 kbps Upload for $25.00 per month
- Plan II: 3.0 Mbps Download/1.5 Mbps Upload for $30.00 per month
- Plan III: 6.0 Mbps Download/1.5 Mbps Upload for $35.00 per month
- Plan IV: 10.0 Mbps Download/3.05 Mbps Upload for $45.00 per month
High Speed Internet (without Basic Local Phone Service):
- Plan I: 3.0 Mbps Download/1.5 Mbps Upload for $40.00 per month
- Plan II: 6.0 Mbps Download/1.5 Mbps Upload for $45.00 per month
- Plan III: 10.0 Mbps Download/3.05 Mbps Upload for $55.00 per month
On its web site, ACT promises ?access without limits?. With its expanding fiber optic network and excellent customer service, the potential for growth in ACT's business are as wide open as the expanses of Big Sky Country itself.