The changing landscape of USF and ICC have profound implications on the broadband ecosystem. Stay tuned to Telecompetitor for the latest news, analysis, & commentary.

Three FCC Rural Broadband Experiment Awardees Rejected Over Letters of Credit

An FCC order released last week denies petitions from three entities that were provisionally awarded funding in the FCC Rural Broadband Experiment program because the awardees were unable to obtain satisfactory letters of credit — a decision that does not bode well for other provisional...Learn More

Fatbeam E-Rate Strategy Fuels Fiber Expansion in Four Mountain West States

Fatbeam E-Rate plans will help the competitive access provider build out wide-area fiber network infrastructure in Idaho, Montana, Oregon and Washington. The Coeur d’Alene, Idaho based broadband access provider won 11 FCC E-rate contracts, which will help fund the construction of an additional 200 miles...Learn More

Final FCC A-CAM Model Outlines $1 Billion in Annual Rural Broadband Support

Final FCC A-CAM model details were released today, outlining the level of Connect America Fund (CAF) support the FCC is offering small rural rate-of-return (ROR) service providers to help cover the costs of bringing broadband to rural areas where service is not available today. The...Learn More

FCC Commissioner: Don’t Plan CAF Mobility Fund Without Planning Remote Area Fund

The FCC should not plan for a CAF Mobility Fund without also planning the parameters for a Remote Area Fund (RAF), argued FCC Commissioner Michael O’Rielly in a blog post this week. The RAF is intended to help cover the costs of bringing broadband to...Learn More

Verizon CAF Auction Ideas: Declined States, Least Costly Locations Should Get Priority

Although Verizon to date has declined to accept funding through the Connect America Fund (CAF) program to bring broadband to unserved parts of its local service territory, the company may be having a change of heart. Comments filed by Verizon with the FCC suggest the...Learn More

Senators Want USF Mobility Fund to Target Croplands

A bi-partisan group of 26 senators is asking the FCC to establish new parameters for a USF mobility fund that would target broadband availability in croplands “or some other geographic measurement.” The goal would be to better support precision agriculture technology aimed at enhancing productivity...Learn More

CAF Auction and Satellite Broadband: ViaSat Expects to Meet Latency Requirements

Satellite broadband provider ViaSat on Friday issued a press release suggesting the company envisions participating in the upcoming Connect America Fund auction – and not just in the portion of the Connect America Fund targeting extremely high-cost areas as some stakeholders initially envisioned. The CAF...Learn More

Rural Gigabit Broadband is Part of FCC $2 Billion Connect America Fund Auction Plans

Rural areas that currently lack broadband could gain broadband at speeds above 1 Gbps as the result of action taken by the FCC at its monthly meeting today. Speeds of 1 Gbps downstream and 500 Mbps upstream are one of four speed levels established by...Learn More

Sprint Announces Wireless Lifeline Services Partnership with i-wireless

OVERLAND PARK, Kan. (BUSINESS WIRE), May 02, 2016 – Sprint (NYSE:S) today announced it has entered into an agreement with i-wireless, LLC to strengthen its position as a leader in the wireless Lifeline services industry. The partnership will merge Sprint’s Assurance Wireless and i-wireless’ Access...Learn More

Broadband Economic Impact Report: Rural Broadband Supports 70K Jobs, $100B in E-Commerce

Investment in rural broadband boosts the economy – not just locally, but beyond – according to a new broadband economic impact report from The Hudson Institute sponsored by the Foundation for Rural Service. Rural broadband service providers contributed $24.2 billion to the economies of the...Learn More

$11.7 Million Available for RUS Community Connect Broadband Grants

The USDA’s Rural Utilities Service unit has $11.7 million available for RUS Community Connect broadband grants and is now accepting applications for funding. Interested parties have until June 17 to apply for grants of at least $100,000 but not to exceed $3 million. Applicants also...Learn More

RUS Broadband Loan Program for FY 2016 Now Open, Up to $10 Million Available

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Rural Utilities Service (RUS) is accepting applications for fiscal year 2016 RUS Broadband Loan and Loan Guarantee program, the agency announced April 8. FY 2016 Rural Broadband Access Loans and Loan Guarantees of $100,000 to $10 million will be...Learn More