As the FCC prepares to vote next week on an order that would make it easier for wireless service providers to deploy small wireless antennas and other infrastructure to speed the deployment of fifth-generation–or 5G–services, two of the agency’s five commissioners discussed the pros and cons of taking that course at an event organized by Politico.
President Donald Trump announced that rural broadband expansion will be included in his $1 trillion infrastructure package, which Trump said will be released “very shortly.” The increased funding for rural broadband expansion is needed. According to FCC data, only 55 percent of rural residents have access to downloads faster than 25 megabits per second, compared to 94 percent in urban areas.
AT&T was awarded a $6.5 billion contract to build and operate the nationwide network FirstNet. However, the legislation that authorizes FirstNet also authorizes a state to develop its own alternative on the spectrum carved out for the network, as long as the alternative is interoperable with the FirstNet core.