The cold sure doesn’t slow us down. According to a report released Monday, North Dakota is now leading the nation in high-speed fiber optic access to the Internet.

The report was unveiled by Jasper Schneider, acting administrator for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s rural utilities service, as well as other officials. Creating a high-speed Internet network for the state of North Dakota has been made a priority, he said, and, “as a result, North Dakota is once again leading the way.”

The report illustrated how many North Dakota homes now have access to fiber optic cable, which is widely recognized as one of the fastest ways to connect to the Internet.


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And faster Internet means North Dakotans hunkering down for the winter can cozy up and binge watch Netflix without too many of those infamous loading spirals.  (And hopefully less of the spinning beach balls of doom – Mac users, you know what I’m talking about.)

For those areas without fiber access, keep reading. Schneider also emphasized that North Dakota has a plan for statewide coverage in the near future. You may recall the recent announcement by MidContinent Communications to provide statewide coverage for North Dakota, Minnesota and South Dakota as part of their Frontier Initiative. Local telecommunications company 702 Communications also provides fiber optic access. And according to Seth Arndorfer, CEO of the Dakota Carrier Network, the 15 telecommunications companies that make up the Dakota Carrier Network have put 40,000 miles of fiber optics in the ground, bringing high-speed broadband capability to every corner of the state. In fact they have invested $100 million per year for the past decade into fiber optic infrastructure.

So yes, North Dakota is well equipped for some speedy Internet. Onward, to 2015!

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Marisa Jackels