Bi-Partisan Congressional Rural Broadband Caucus Wants to Bridge Digital Divide

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A bi-partisan Congressional Rural Broadband Caucus plans to focus on bridging the rural-urban digital divide. According to press material, the group will “facilitate discussion, educate Members of Congress and staff and develop policy solutions.” Four Congressmen will serve as co-chairmen, including Kevin Cramer (R- N.D.),...Learn More

Commissioners Argue FCC Broadband Speed Definition, CAF Plans

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As expected, this year’s Broadband Progress Report from the FCC will state that broadband is not being deployed in a timely fashion. As adopted at today’s monthly FCC meeting, the report also notes a widening rural/urban disparity in available broadband speeds, said FCC officials at...Learn More

FCC (Again) Wants to Create Set-Top Box Competition

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A proposed rulemaking that will begin circulating within the FCC tomorrow aims to make the pay TV market more competitive by eliminating the need for consumers to lease a set-top box (STB) from their cable or satellite company or telco video provider. Instead consumers would...Learn More

Awaiting FCC Action, Special Access Data Generates Controversy

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Just days after opponents said they expect special access data collected by the FCC to show that the special access market is not competitive, USTelecom yesterday said the data will show just the opposite. USTelecom represents incumbent carriers, including some of the nation’s largest companies...Learn More

Consumer Watchdog: Google Spending on Lobbying Tops All in Tech

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Facebook, Apple and Amazon spent more on lobbying the federal government in 2015 than ever before, while Google spending on lobbying expenses exceeded $16 million for the second year running, according to non-partisan non-profit Consumer Watchdog. Google spending on lobbying exceeded all of the 16...Learn More

Senators Challenge 25 Mbps FCC Broadband Speed Definition

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It’s been a year since the FCC broadband speed definition was raised to include service supporting speeds of 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream for purposes of the commission’s annual broadband progress report. But opponents of that move – including six Republic senators —...Learn More

ILEC Competitors: Special Access Contract “Fresh Look” Could Be Coming

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The special access market is not competitive — and based on data it has collected, the FCC is likely to assert that, said representatives from a range of organizations that buy special access circuits on Wednesday. Representatives from companies such as Sprint and Level 3,...Learn More

Digital Economy: Accenture Sees Potential $368 Billion Boost to U.S. GDP

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The digital economy accounts for more than 20% of the combined GDP of 11 industrialized nations, according to Accenture Strategy’s ¨Digital Disruption: the Growth Multiplier¨ report. Maximizing use of digital skills and technologies could add another $2 trillion worth of economic activity to the global...Learn More

FCC Eyes 5.9 GHz Band for Gigabit Wi-Fi, Sharing with Auto Industry

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Two FCC commissioners who often disagree on policy matters expressed support this week for opening up spectrum in the 5.9 GHz band for unlicensed use on a shared basis with the incumbent spectrum holder – the American auto industry. As the New America Open Technology...Learn More

AT&T Wins FCC Deal, Despite Harsh Words for the Commission

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AT&T has won a major contract to provide the FCC with IP connectivity. In the five-year deal, AT&T will interconnect FCC offices and data centers to support mobile and cloud-based applications, offering the FCC the ability to change network and Internet needs on demand. AT&T...Learn More

FCC Broadband Report: 10% Nationwide and 39% in Rural Areas Lack 25 Mbps Service

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FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is circulating a draft of this year’s Broadband Progress Report within the commission which states that 10% of Americans cannot get broadband service at speeds of at least 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream. The numbers are quite different for...Learn More

Consumer Group Protests Proposed FCC Lifeline Program Restrictions

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Concerns about the potential for fraud has led the FCC to consider limiting Lifeline payments for broadband Internet or voice service to low-income households participating in the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Furthermore, applicants would need to obtain vouchers monthly or make use of...Learn More