The Federal Communications Commission won an important battle in a fight to free up more unlicensed wireless spectrum for Wi-Fi devices. A federal appeals court on August 12 sided with the FCC in its decision to reallocate a big chunk of key spectrum for an expansion of unlicensed Wi-Fi use. The spectrum had previously been set aside for auto safety.
While we're still a long way from seeing any of the much-hyped futuristic applications that 5G was supposed to bring, like autonomous vehicles or augmented reality, even the promised higher download speeds and super responsive networks have been inconsistent or simply unavailable to most people, especially those who live outside big cities or dense suburban communities. But there's a potential answer to the 5G coverage issue: more fiber. There's reason to be hopeful on the fiber front.
Net neutrality and the rest of President Joe Biden's broadband agenda hang in the balance as the president's nominee for the deadlock-breaking fifth commissioner on the Federal Communications Commission awaits a vote in the US Senate. But the process has stalled for nine months and time is running out. Gigi Sohn, a longtime public-interest advocate and former FCC adviser, was nominated in October 2021 to be the third Democrat at the agency.
While some families are unconnected because broadband simply isn't available, many don't have access even when it is available, because they can't afford the service or they lack devices like laptops to connect to home broadband.
A new chapter in the ongoing saga of net neutrality and who governs the internet will take shape over the next year thanks to another shift in power at the Federal Communications Commission. Withfirming up a Democratic majority at the agency, reinstating Obama-era net neutrality rules thrown out under the Trump administration will be a top priority for the FCC. In late 2021, Biden of the FCC.
Gigi Sohn [Senior Fellow and Public Advocate at the Benton Institute for Broadband & Society], President Joe Biden's pick to fill the vacant seat on the five-member Federal Communications Commission, will pave the way for the restoration of Obama-era net neutrality protections if confirmed by the US Senate.
Long before the COVID-19 pandemic forced millions of children to attend school via the internet, Federal Communications Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel was sounding the alarm about US students who lacked access to broadband.
As Democrats in Congress wrestle over President Joe Biden's multitrillion-dollar package targeting everything from roads to child care, hanging in the balance is a small but critical sliver of the infrastructure bill seen as a possible salve to our digital divide problem. This legislation provides long-overdue funding to upgrade traditional infrastructure, such as roads, bridges and electrical grids. But also included in the bill is a proposal for $65 billion in federal funding for broadband investment.
Frances Haugen, a former Facebook product manager, sat before a Senate subcommittee for more than three hours and described how the social media giant has prioritized its profits over public good. In her testimony, Haugen called on Congress to regulate Facebook and require more transparency from the company on its practices.
For Federal Communications Commission Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel, the moment is now to get the US on the right track toward ending the digital divide. That's what she's been trying to do with an influx of federal funding aimed at getting Americans connected to the internet during the COVID-19 pandemic. The crisis, which has hit low-income Americans and people of color especially hard, has brought attention to the digital divide and has spurred Congress to act, Rosenworcel said.