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Quad-City company, Microsoft to improve broadband access

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DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - A Quad-Cities company says it will work with Microsoft to improve rural broadband access to about 126,000 people in Iowa, Illinois and South Dakota.

The Des Moines Register reports that Illinois-based Network Business Systems will work to expand access to Iowa residents in Scott, Muscatine and Clinton counties.

David Peters is an associate professor of sociology at Iowa State University. He says the three selected Iowa counties aren't rural.

Microsoft officials say urban counties have rural residents who struggle to find internet service.

Federal Communications Commission figures show that more than 60 percent of rural residents in Muscatine County didn't have access to high-speed internet in 2016. Less than 30 percent of Clinton County residents didn't have access, while more than 20 percent didn't have access in Scott County.

This story has been corrected to show that the Illinois company is called Network Business Systems.

Information from: The Des Moines Register, http://www.desmoinesregister.com

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