A tablet is one of the essential gadgets for accessing internet services. Some tablets function like phones in that you can insert a SIM card and call or text. Since gadgets are expensive, some people cannot afford them, especially those living below the poverty line. Therefore, the government saw it essential to provide free tablets for low-income families through various service providers within the country. 

    You can get a free tablet by applying online through various avenues, as you will find out later. Mostly, the government gives out gadgets to help students in their education plus other important purposes such as entertainment, and so much more. We are talking about digital learning, and tablets are important gadgets that can facilitate learning. Laptops can do, but they are a bit heavy and costly. 

    You have to note that even non-governmental organisations give free tablets to eligible persons apart from the federal government. You can also get a grant from the government to purchase a tablet. A grant, also called gift aid, does not need to be repaid. The federal government also gives grants to assist the needy to pay fees for their education. One must show that they have the right qualifications.

    factors to check when getting a tablet

    Every device has specifications that make it the way it is. Usually, when buying a phone, there are specifications that you check. The same applies to tablets. The following are the essential aspects to check. 

    1. Battery capacity

    A battery powers a tablet, and there is a need to check the one with the most powerful battery possible. We measure battery capacities using milliamp Hour (mAh). The bigger the battery capacity, the more lasting it is when fully charged. If you get a tablet with a battery capacity of 5000mAh, the better. You can spend the whole day reading or doing some activities without recharging it. 

    2. Screen size

    Getting a device with the largest screen size possible is good because it can display large items. If you use it for studies, you won’t have to struggle to read or watch educational videos. Moreover, when playing games or watching movies, you will find it enjoyable when using a large screen. Some tablets have screens as large as those of laptops. Usually, the screen sizes range from 7 inches to 11 inches. 

    When choosing a screen size, you should also choose the screen quality. A strong screen will last for a long period. 

    3. Memories

    Tablets and similar devices have memories that they run on. We have Random Access Memory (RAM, and Read-Only Memory (ROM). The Random Access Memory helps tablets, phones, and laptops to process data. The larger the memory, the more it can handle more data. Think of it from the perspective of an average adult and a child. Adults can think faster and solve complex issues than a child since they have large memories. A tablet of 2 GB and above can do better. 

    On the other hand, the Read-Only Memory allows you to store files on your device. The free government phones and tablets have smaller memories, but you can upgrade to better devices if you get money. After all, you won’t remain poor all through. If you get a tablet with a storage space of 16 GB or more, then you are good to go. Furthermore, most tablets allow you to expand the storage memory using a memory card.

    4. Processing speeds

    Devices such as tablets, phones, and computers have processing speeds measured in Gigahertz. Slow processing speeds can make it difficult to access things faster. For example, when you have a tablet with a processing speed of 1 GHz, you will not be able to load things faster than a device with 1.5GHz or 2GHz. 

    5. Brand

    There are brands that for sure are long-lasting. You can stay with them for long without developing major technical issues. For example, when you get a Samsung or iPhone tablet, you can be sure that you will have a long life with those devices. However, the devices are expensive due to their quality, and maybe you cannot get the tablet for free from the government or NGO. 

    Application Process to free tablet for low income

    You can apply for a free tablets for low-income families online at the concerned federal government agency or various non-governmental organizations’ websites. first of all, create accounts on the relevant website, then proceed to apply. You require the following details.

    • A photo ID Proof
    • Eligibility proof document
    • Residence proof. You can bring the recent utility bills for water, electricity, and internet. 
    • Income proof or salary slip
    • Income proof/ student information
    • Contact details such as phone number and email address

    Other documents that you can use for income proof include the following.

    • An Unemployment Compensation statement of benefits
    • A Veteran Administration statement of benefits 
    • A retirement/pension statement of benefits
    • A Social Security statement of benefits
    • The previous state, federal, or tribal tax return 

    The proof can differ from one state to another or from one NGO to the other. I forgot to inform you that we also have charities that offer free tablets to needy ones. Once you have all the requirements, you can then apply for the gadget and enjoy various services. The following are avenues to get free tablets.

    1. Lifeline program

    The lifeline program is a federal aid project that aims to help the less fortunate benefit from subsidized plans and free government smartphones. Some service providers such as Qlink issue free tablets and subsidized plans for eligible consumers. You can qualify for the program if your total household is at 135% or below as per the Federal Poverty Guidelines.

    One can also qualify if they participate in other aid programs such as Medicare, SNAP, Supplemental Security Income (SSI), or Federal Public Housing Assistance, among others. 

    2. Salvation Army

    The Salvation Army is a Non-Governmental organization that gives free tablets to low-income families offers to the less fortunate Americans. Even though the NGO helps the poor, they have a special interest in technology, and you can present your documents for verification and get your tablet. The organization has various stores throughout the country, and you can benefit from a device to help you sort out your needs. 

    Q Link Wireless is a telecommunication company in the United States of America and operates from Dania, Florida. It is one of the companies which provide free wireless services to eligible Lifeline American consumers. Also, you can get a QLink wireless free tablet courtesy of the Lifeline program and use it for various activities.

    Moreover, the company provides cellular service with free text messages, free data, and free minutes. You can also bring your phone and its number if you think the free phone given by the company does not meet your demands. 

    To get the free tablet from Qlink, you have to sign up at Qlink wireless, provide the necessary documents, receive your free tablet, then activate the service. You can make your application using any internet-compatible device, such as a computer, smartphone, or tablet. 

    However, before making your application, you need to know that the QLink tablets are from the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program. The EBB free tablet requires that you contribute at least $10 and at most $50 to get $100 from the government and purchase your tablet from Qlink. Therefore, it is not entirely free.  

    However, the Emergency Broadband Benefit Program is coming to an end very soon. It is being taken over by the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP), a Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program that aims to continue assisting the less fortunate with affordable internet connections. The qualification for ACP differs a bit from EBB and Lifeline because the Poverty Guideline Level has changed from 135% to 200%. That means many more people can apply and qualify for the service. 

    One interesting thing is that the EBB beneficiaries will benefit from the ACP services as long as their qualification for assistance still stands out. For your information, it is not just Qlink that assists in connecting people with EBB, ACP, and lifeline. We also have other service providers. For example, you can get the Assurance Wireless free tablet the same way you get the QLink tablet, i.e., through the EBB program.  

    4. Komputers 4 Kids

    The organization collects old tablets and PCs from kind-hearted people, then refurbishes them and donates them to needy people such as the school-going children to use them at schools to advance their education. 

    We have organizations that provide free tablet applications to those in need to help them where possible. They include; 

    • Computer Technology Assistance Corps (CTAC):
    • Causes
    • World Computer Exchange
    • Computer For Learning
    • Adaptive.Org

    Bottom line

    A tablet is one of the most important devices you can use for your internet needs. Since not everybody can afford a tablet, the government gives free tablets for low-income families to the needy via various service providers such as Q Link and Assurance Wireless. You can also get a free tablet from various non-governmental organizations. You should show proof that you are eligible to benefit from the program.