Free stuff is always good, especially when it’s a phone, the device we can’t seem to live without. And when the government gives you a free iPhone, things get even sweeter. Yes, despite the unlikeliness, the government’s EBB initiative actually made it possible for low-income people.
And now, if you’re wondering about how to get a free iPhone with the EBB program in 2022, the answer is simple. All you have to do is to enroll yourself online along with the required documentation after qualifying through the program’s eligibility criteria.
You can even get up to $50 off your internet bill each month and $100 off a new phone or tablet. Let’s see how this works in more detail.
How Does the EBB Program Work?
The EBB or Emergency Broadband Benefit program was launched by the U.S government in late 2020 to help low-income people during the COVID-19 pandemic.
A monthly discount of up to $50 on internet service and up to $75 for standalone broadband service was the goal of the $3.2 billion Federal Communications Commission project. The idea was to provide people with the resources they need to stay connected and work or study remotely during the pandemic.
For this purpose, the government partnered with major internet and phone service providers like AT&T, Comcast, Google Fi, T-Mobile, Verizon, and many others.
Distribution of the EBB subsidy is handled by broadband providers and approved retailers, but the US government provides the funding.
What Are the Other Benefits of the EBB Program?
In addition to the free iPhone and the subsidies mentioned above, the EBB program also offers a temporary Lifeline subsidy of up to $34.25 per month, which can be used for voice, text, and data services.
This subsidy is in addition to the $50 monthly subsidy towards broadband service, which means that eligible households can receive up to $84.25 in total monthly subsidies.
Additionally, a one-time discount of up to $100 was also offered as part of the EBB program when buying a brand-new laptop, tablet, or desktop computer from a partner company.
To get this discount, you need to buy the device from an approved retailer and have it activated with a participating broadband provider within 60 days of purchase.
How Do You Qualify for the Emergency Broadband Benefit?
Applicants must meet certain requirements to become eligible for the free Government EBB iPhone program set by Emergency Broadband Benefit and Lifeline. To be eligible for the EBB, you must meet at least one of the requirements listed below:
- Be eligible for Lifeline, Medicaid, SNAP, SSI, FPHA, Veterans Assistance, Survivors Benefit, or tribal assistance programs.
- At or below the Federal Poverty Guidelines, having an income of 135% of the median income.
- Take part in the SBP (School Breakfast Program), NSLP (National School Lunch Program), or USDA Community Eligibility Provision in the 2019–2020 academic year.
- Be awarded a Federal Pell Grant in the ongoing academic year.
- Lost a noteworthy earnings amount after February 29, 2020, reducing income for single filers to $99000 and joint filers to $198000.
- Qualify and participate in the ISP’s ongoing COVID-19 or low-income program.
Documents Required to Get Free iPhone with the EBB Program
The provider must verify your details before determining whether you are eligible for the program after you submit your application. If they are unable to verify your eligibility, you will need to submit supporting documentation.
Your eligibility criteria determine which documents you must provide. Acceptable documents include:
- An applicant with a limited budget must supply a copy of their most recent tax return. A pay stub from each of the past three months will also be required.
- Provide evidence that you are participating in government assistance programs if you are a candidate. Adding a company cover letter or membership card is also an option.
- Jurisdiction in divorce
- A letter confirming benefits or a program approval letter
- Paystubs or income statements from your employer
- A Social Security benefit declaration
- Workers’ Compensation or Unemployment Insurance Benefit Statement
- Benefits statement for pensioners
- Child support rewards
- The report provider, the program name, and the date it was issued may be required to identify your participation in an eligible assistance program.
How to Apply and Get a Free iPhone From the EBB Program 2022
Once you’ve ensured your eligibility for a free iPhone from the EBB program, the application procedure shouldn’t take long. Here’s what you’ll need to do.
- Check with your state’s EBB or Lifeline provider to determine if you qualify for a free iPhone. You can find out the available providers in your state by visiting this link.
- After identifying a provider, visit its website to submit your application online. Just follow the instructions given on the website and upload the required documents accordingly.
An email will be sent to you if your application has been accepted, including information on further proceedings.
Which Providers Offer Free iPhones under the EBB Program?
Despite a dozen or so providers pledging to the FCC to offer free smartphones through the Emergency Broadband Connectivity Fund, only three companies offer eligible individuals a free iPhone. The three companies are:
Cintex Wireless is a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) that piggybacks on AT&T’s network. The provider is currently giving away free iPhone 6 and 7 devices to new and existing customers who qualify for the Lifeline and the EBB programs.
Currently, they’re providing their services in five states: Arkansas, Rhode Island, Maine, West Virginia, and Maryland. Depending on your eligibility, you can avail of unlimited talk, text, and data per month besides the free iPhone.
NewPhone Wireless is a subsidiary of iWireless Solutions and uses the T-Mobile network. The provider offers free iPhones throughout the USA who qualify for either the Lifeline or the EBB programs.
You may need to sign up for their Basic or Unlimited Plans starting at $32 per month to avail of a free iPhone from NewPhone Wireless. However, the company also offers free monthly plans with unlimited talk, text, and data if you meet certain criteria.
SFone is owned by the Sante Fe Indian Tribe and uses the Sprint network. The provider is currently giving away iPhones for free to new and existing customers in New Mexico who qualify for the Lifeline or EBB programs. Among the few other states, it also provides its services in Oregon, Maine, Arkansas, and Arizona.
What Types of iPhones Are Provided by EBB Program?
The three companies listed above may offer different types and models of iPhones. As of now, Cintex Wireless provides the iPhone 6s or 7 (GSM or CDMA), and so does NewPhone Wireless, whereas SFone provides the iPhone 6. SFone also has an iPhone 6s deal in place, but it’s discounted rather than free.
Cell phones are no longer a luxury but a necessity in today’s connected world. And for many Americans with low incomes, getting an iPhone for free can change everything.
The EBB program is a great initiative by the FCC to help those in need. Although the program is still in its nascent stage, it has already helped many people across the USA to get a free iPhone.
We hope this guide helped you learn everything you need to know about the EBB program and how to apply for a free iPhone from it. So, if you’re eligible, don’t wait any longer and apply for the program right away.