Western Nevadans are being asked to participate in a broadband speed test to determine where the most unserved and underserved homes and businesses are located.
However, in order to participate in www.nevadaspeedtest.org, they have to be able log onto, you know, the internet.
Western Nevada Development District is partnering with local governments to launch the speed test to determine where the state’s most underserved locations.
Connectivity is a cornerstone to business, education, financial literacy, access to employment and health care through telemedicine.
The speed test is a mapping tool which measures internet speeds. By analyzing home and business connectivity, strategies can be identified and funding solutions pursued that improve regional broadband infrastructure.
The Nevada Speed Test is a primary element of the Western Nevada Broadband Initiative, a coalition of local governments that are members of WNDD which engages in regional economic development planning. The goal is to gather data in all communities served by the Development District.
The speed test and mapping hardware was created by GEO Partners LLC, a Minnesota-based tech company that analyzes real-time internet speed data by collecting speed test information from residents. GEO is an independent broadband data collection and analysis firm with extensive experience and not affiliated with any internet service providers (ISPs).
The Nevada Speed Test may be performed on any device that has an internet or cellular connection and takes less than one minute to complete. Residents are asked only to take the speed test from their residence, place of business or school.
Participation by everyone is essential. No personal information will be collected. Repeated speed tests are encouraged during the one-year initiative to better capture variations in internet speeds and collect more statistically valid data.
Speed test information will be superimposed on layers of GIS data for the region and will help pinpoint areas that are most in need of reliable, affordable access to broadband service. The tool can also create project cost estimates, measuring everything from topography to types of fiber construction methods and materials.
The Western Nevada Broadband Initiative will make this data available to local government partners to better provide the services citizens need and to use the date to capture federal grant funding.
“The Western Nevada Broadband initiative is interested in this mapping information being available to decision-makers so that they can provide the service that their citizens need,” said Pershing County Economic Development Authority Director Heidi Lusby-Angvick. “This speed test and mapping initiative will also provide information so that we can be more competitive in grant applications.”
Members of the Western Nevada Broadband Initiative include City of Reno, City of Sparks. City of Fernley. City of Lovelock, City of Fallon, City of Winnemucca, Douglas County, Washoe County, Storey County, Mineral County, Pershing County and Humboldt County. Marketing partners include the Nevada Farm Bureau and the Nevada Rural Housing Authority and WNDD’s Associate Members.