FCC to Auction Additional 5G Spectrum, Boost Rural Internet

The Associated Press

FCC Chief Ajit Pai Unveils New Push to Ensure American Leadership in 5G APSEAN MORAN12 Apr 2019

The $20.4 billion Rural Digital Opportunity Fund will connect as many as 4 million homes over the next decade, Pai said. "The government doesn't have to spend lots of money", Trump said at a White House event on 5G deployment.

FCC chairman Pai said that the agency wants to create a $20.4 billion Rural Digital Opportunity fund. "It won't be almost as good, almost as fast".

"The consumer benefits are going to be massive", FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in an interview Friday on Bloomberg TV.

USA officials have unveiled plans to accelerate deployment of 5G wireless networks, including new funding to bring the ultrafast systems to remote rural areas. The third 5G spectrum auction will be the largest, with the FCC selling 3,400 megahertz in three different spectrum bands. "I also suggest that the US government intervene and facilitate the resolution of conflicts between American technology companies so that they collaborate and effectively compete against the companies sponsored by foreign governments".

The Federal Communications Commission said Friday that it would hold the largest auction in U.S. history, of 3,400 megahertz, to boost wireless companies' networks.

The announcement comes amid an intense race by countries around the world to deploy the technology offering wireless speeds 10 to 100 times faster than now available.

For more than a year, the White House has been mulling an executive order that would direct the Commerce Department to block US companies from buying equipment from foreign telecommunications makers that pose significant national security risks, Reuters reported in December.

President Trump and the Federal Communications Commission unveiled a new 5G effort Friday afternoon.

"In the United States our approach is private sector driven and private sector led", said President Trump.

"The White House has yet to offer a workable plan for US leadership", Rosenworcel said.

A State Department senior official on Wednesday said the security concerns about Huawei and ZTE extend to all companies headquartered in China, contending they are effectively "under direction" of the Chinese Communist Party.

FILE - Attendees take pictures of the new Huawei Mate X foldable 5G smartphone during the Mobile World Congress wireless show, in Barcelona, Spain, Feb. 25, 2019.

The rollout started last week in the US and South Korea but will take years. Pai told Bloomberg Television that it would be allocating "more spectrum for commercial 5G than all the mobile broadband providers in America have today combined". Pai said consideration is "ongoing" without offering a deadline for a decision.

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