BILLINGS — A new internet and television company is coming to Billings before the end of the year.
TDS Telecom began laying fiber lines in downtown Billings last week and hopes to begin offering high-speed internet soon.
“This is an extensive job. We’re going to be building 500 miles of fiber-optic cable that’s going to go throughout and all over the terrain of Billings. We started in earnest this week; you’ll see some productivity performance this fall,” said Drew Petersen, the vice president of corporate affairs for TDS.
TDS will become the first utility in Billings to offer a fiber network, which could mean internet speeds twice as fast as anything currently on the market.
“We’re hoping to cover the vast majority of the entire community. They’ll all have that full suite of services with 2 gigs as the highest level of speed. But our entry-level speed is 300 mbs symmetrical,” said Petersen.
Petersen says they hope to reach around 40,000 homes and businesses in Billings, but they do not have plans to reach communities outside of Billings.
“It’s an extensive build, we’re hoping to provide high-speed fiber-optic broadband to about 40,000 residents and businesses, so we’re really looking to capture every nook and cranny in Billings,” said Petersen.
The first neighbors could be reached by the end of this year, but construction is expected to last until 2023.