Are you a resident of Ohio struggling to afford essential electronic devices? If so, you have come to the right place, as in this article, we will take a closer look at how to get a free tablet in Ohio. Getting a free tablet is vital for low-income people, as it enables them to pursue job opportunities and online education, work, get healthcare, browse the internet for information, communicate with loved ones, contact useful services, and more.
Is it Possible to Get a Free Tablet in Ohio? If so, how?
Many programs and initiatives are eager to help bridge the digital divide and help low-income people have access to technology and thus have an equal opportunities in life. As such, it is possible to get a free tablet in Ohio. Here are some ways to get a free tablet in Ohio:
- Nonprofit organizations and community groups: Some nonprofit organizations and community groups may provide free tablets to eligible individuals or families.
- Local schools, churches, and libraries: Some local schools, churches, and libraries may loan out tablets to students and patrons who do not have access to a device at home. This can be particularly important for students who need to participate in virtual learning.
- Carrier companies and retailers: These types of companies sometimes offer promotional deals on tablets or other devices.
- Affordable Connectivity Program: The U.S. government has launched a new program during the pandemic to help eligible low-income households access affordable high-speed internet and devices, including free tablets. Eligible households can receive a one-time discount of up to $100 to purchase a device, including a tablet, laptop, or desktop computer.
Overall, while not everyone may be eligible for free tablets in Ohio, there are programs and initiatives in place that can help eligible individuals and families access the devices they need to stay connected, access important resources, and participate in virtual learning.
How to Get a Free Tablet in Ohio Through Non-Profit Organizations
There are several non-profit organizations that operate in Ohio or nationwide and offer free or discounted tablets and other devices (and in some cases even monthly internet service plans) to people who are struggling to afford them. Here are a few examples of such companies:
- Connect Ohio: This nonprofit organization provides free or low-cost refurbished computers and tablets to eligible low-income households in Ohio. The program is open to households with school-aged children who are eligible for free or reduced-price lunches, as well as households with seniors or individuals with disabilities who meet income eligibility requirements. To get the free device, contact the organization.
- Connected Nation Ohio: The company’s goal is to change lives by providing free internet access and connected devices, such as computers and laptops. You can apply for a free tablet through this non-profit by contacting them online or via phone.
- PCs for People: This is a nonprofit organization that provides refurbished computers and tablets at low or no cost to low-income households and nonprofits. To get a free device, you must meet the ACP eligibility criteria listed below, as the company is funded by the government. Then, you can apply online or by contacting the provider.
Other non-profit organizations that may offer free or discounted tablets to low-income people on a national level include the Salvation Army, Accelerated Schools Program, Adaptive.org, EveryoneOn, Causes, Computer Technology Assistance Corps (CTAC), Komputers 4 Kids, Microsoft Registered Refurbished, On It Foundation, and Smartriverside.
How to Get a Free Tablet in Ohio Through Local Schools, Churches, or Libraries
Overall, getting a free tablet through local schools, churches, or libraries in Ohio can be possible, but it may require some research and outreach on your part to find the right programs and initiatives in your area. Here are some steps you can take to explore these options:
- Check with your local school district
- Contact local churches and community organizations.
- Visit your local library.
How to Get a Free Tablet in Ohio Through Carriers or Retailers
Getting a free tablet in Ohio through carriers or retailers may be possible, but it may depend on current promotions and eligibility criteria. Here are some steps you can take to explore these options:
- Check with a mobile carrier: Some mobile carriers offer promotions that include free tablets with a new phone line or data plan. You can contact the company or check online. Make sure to check the conditions for getting the promo deal.
- Visit electronics retailers: Some electronics retailers may offer free tablets as part of promotions or discounts. Visit electronics retailers like Best Buy, Target, or Walmart to see if they have any current promotions that include a free tablet.
- Check with device manufacturers: Some device manufacturers like Samsung, Apple, or Google may offer promotions that include free tablets with the purchase of a device or through special discounts. Visit the device manufacturer’s website or contact their customer support to check current options.
Keep in mind that all of these offers are temporary and that they include certain conditions.
How to Get a Free Tablet in Ohio Through ACP
As a way to try to bridge the digital divide, the government has recently launched a federal assistance program called the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), which offers discounts on internet services and connected devices. To get a free tablet in Ohio through ACP, you must do the following:
Step 1: Qualify for an ACP Free Tablet in Ohio
The program is open to households that meet at least one of the following conditions:
- Households with incomes at or below 200% of the federal poverty guidelines.
- Households that have received a Federal Pell Grant in the current award year.
- Households that participate in another qualifying assistance program, such as:
- Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)
- Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC)
- Supplemental Security Income (SSI)
- Federal Public Housing Assistance (FPHA)
- Veterans Pension and Survivors Benefit
- Free and Reduced-Price School Lunch Program or School Breakfast Program, including at U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Community Eligibility Provision schools
- Bureau of Indian Affairs General Assistance
- Head Start (only households meeting the income qualifying standard)
- Tribal Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (Tribal TANF)
- Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations
Moreover, if you are applying in Ohio, you must be a resident of this state and you must be at least 18 years old or an emancipated minor.
Step 2: Prove Your Eligibility to Get an ACP Free Tablet in Ohio
If the National Verifier (the institution that evaluates ACP eligibility) is unable to verify all the information, you will be required to provide proof of your Ohio residency, age or emancipation status, and income-based or program participation-based eligibility.
- To prove your Ohio residency, you must provide a copy of a valid official document that includes your full name and address, such as a valid ID, utility bill, tax return, etc.
- To prove your age, you must provide a document that includes your name and date of birth, such as a valid ID, passport, birth certificate, etc.
- To prove your emancipation status, you must provide a court document or certificate.
- To prove your income-based eligibility, you can provide paycheck stubs, a current income statement from your employer, a prior year’s tax return, etc.
- To prove your program participation-based eligibility, you can provide an approval letter, benefit award letter, statement of benefits, etc.
Step 3: Apply for ACP to Get a Free Tablet in Ohio
The best thing to do is to apply directly through the National Verifier, as many ACP companies will require you to do so before applying for their services anyway. You can apply online at https://nv.fcc.gov/lifeline/?id=nv_flow&ebbp=true&awsl=link-from-how-to-apply by providing all the required information and proof documentation. To apply via mail (not recommended, as it takes much longer), follow the instructions at https://www.affordableconnectivity.gov/how-to-apply/.
Step 4: Find a Free Tablet Provider in Ohio
Some very generous ACP companies operate in Ohio, including AirTalk Wireless, Q Link Wireless, StandUp Wireless, and TruConnect. These companies offer ACP tablets, free monthly internet services, additional free monthly talk minutes and text messages through the Lifeline assistance program, and even a free smartphone for customers who qualify for both ACP and Lifeline.
To find which ACP companies offer free tablets in Ohio, go to https://cnm.universalservice.org/, enter your ZIP code or city and state, choose the program, and press Search. When the system generates a list of companies, note which ones offer discounts on devices and contact them to apply.
What Kind of Free Tablet Can I Get in Ohio
Most ACP companies don’t reveal the tablet models in advance, as it depends on availability. However, they tend to offer mid-range Android devices.
However, there are certain generous companies, such as AirTalk Wireless that do reveal their tablet models and they offer devices like:
- Apple iPad Air
- Samsung Galaxy Tab S4
- Apple iPad Mini 3
- Alcatel Joy Tab 2
- KonnectOne Moxee Tablet, and many more.