White House Opposes FCC Free Wireless Network Plan - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Mobile
News
12/11/2008
11:19 AM
50%
50%

White House Opposes FCC Free Wireless Network Plan

Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez reveals President Bush's resistance to an auction of 25 megahertz of spectrum in the 2,155- to 2,180-MHz band.

The U.S. Department of Commerce and the White House oppose the Federal Communications Commission's plan to promote free wireless Internet throughout the United States, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.

The Journal reported that Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez sent a letter Wednesday saying that the White House wants the airwaves auctioned without price or product mandate. He said that the FCC spectrum auctions illustrated increased potential for problems when licensing is "overly prescriptive or designed around unproven business models," according to the Journal report.

The FCC could vote on the issue as early as Dec. 18, before Chairman Kevin Martin leaves. Martin proposed an auction of 25 MHz of spectrum in the 2,155-MHz to 2,180-MHz band. He wants the winner to use some of the airwaves to give Internet users free access through an ad-supported system. Martin also wants the winner to filter some content so young people can't access illegal and inappropriate content through the free wireless network.

Martin said the company with the winning bid could offer faster service through subscriptions.

Providers oppose his plan. They say competition should drive growth and help support the cost of building networks. They also said that opening the airwaves could allow interference with networks they have spent millions to acquire. The FCC dismissed those concerns and said the airwaves could be opened without posing significant risks of interference.

The Commerce Department has previously expressed opposition to the plan, but the Gutierrez letter goes beyond that to say that President George W. Bush opposes it as well.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Commentary
2021 Outlook: Tackling Cloud Transformation Choices
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  1/4/2021
News
Enterprise IT Leaders Face Two Paths to AI
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  12/23/2020
Slideshows
10 IT Trends to Watch for in 2021
Cynthia Harvey, Freelance Journalist, InformationWeek,  12/22/2020
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
The State of Cloud Computing - Fall 2020
The State of Cloud Computing - Fall 2020
Download this report to compare how cloud usage and spending patterns have changed in 2020, and how respondents think they'll evolve over the next two years.
Video
Current Issue
2021 Top Enterprise IT Trends
We've identified the key trends that are poised to impact the IT landscape in 2021. Find out why they're important and how they will affect you.
Slideshows
Flash Poll