A Fiberworks crew installs fiber-optic cable Thursday alongside Sabattus Street in Lewiston. Andree Kehn/Sun Journal

LEWISTON — Fiber-optic internet service is rolling out in the Twin Cities.

Fidium Fiber, one of the two companies vying for customers in the area, says the service is available for 18,000 homes and small businesses.

Fidium fiber map

A map from Fidium Fiber indicates where the internet provider has built its network and approximate Fidium accessibility in the Lewiston and Auburn area by July. Submitted image

The company did not elaborate on where service is available in Lewiston and Auburn, but said 12,000 more homes and small businesses will be connected to its grid by July.

Last fall, Sarah Davis, senior director for government affairs at Consolidated Communications, Fidium Fiber’s parent company, said they plan to connect about 35,000 homes in the area by the end of this year.

A spokesman for Consolidated said Wednesday that the difference between the number shared last year and this year lies in the detailed engineering.

“As our engineers review the network, they refine the approximate passings, address by address,” Nicole Elton said. “The build is still covering the area we planned, we just have a clearer picture of how many actual serviceable addresses are in that area.”


Trucks and crews have been highly visible across the area for the past few months for Fidium Fiber and competitor GoNetspeed, running fiber lines and checking infrastructure.

A map from GoNetspeed shows its current build-out of fiber-optic lines in Lewiston and Auburn. Submitted image

GoNetspeed said Thursday that by the end of June, over 3,300 homes and businesses in Auburn will be serviceable. Construction is underway in Lewiston and is on track to be completed by early fall. The internet provider has not announced a price structure, although prices are posted on their website and are listed below.

Inputting a street address into GoNetspeed’s “check availability” search brings up a map indicating where the company has already built. Inputting an address to Fidium Fiber’s “check availability” search will show if service is currently available there.

Fiber-optic internet service is considered superior over cable or digital subscriber lines (telephone lines) for a number of reasons. It is connected with a dedicated service to each home, not a shared service like cable. Fiber-optic delivers a super-fast connection using light signals, which don’t degrade over distance. Security is also enhanced by fiber-optic, which does not radiate its signal the way copper does, making it much more difficult to tap or hack.

Fidium’s 2-gigabyte service is $75 a month, 1-gigabyte is $55 a month, and includes free installation, no contracts, no data caps and a free Wi-Fi router. Fidium also offers 250-mbps internet at $60 a month and 50-mbps service at $35 a month. Prices are locked for one year and increase after 12 months. Add-on services include Voice over Internet Protocol, or VoIP, home phone and streaming TV packages available through partner services.

GoNetspeed’s website shows 1-gigabyte (1,000 mbps) service is $69.96 a month, 500-mbps is $59.95 a month, and 250-mbps service is $49.95 a month. Prices listed are a 12-month promotional price, after which prices will increase $10 a month, to what it says is GoNetspeed’s standard pricing. GoNetspeed advertises no data caps, no contracts and live, 24/7 support.

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