Latest in 3.5ghz

Image credit:

FCC vote clears the way for lower-cost mobile data

Jon Fingas, @jonfingas
April 18, 2015
Share
Tweet
Share

Sponsored Links

Don't look now, but you may soon have more options for mobile internet access beyond the usual wireless carriers. The FCC has voted in favor of rules that not only make a wide 100MHz slice of 3.5GHz spectrum available for mobile data, but makes that data more accessible. Rather than simply parcel out the airwaves to the highest bidders (which are usually telecoms), the FCC has a "General Authorized Access" tier that lets any device use these frequencies, similar to WiFi's license-free scheme. The move would still let conventional carriers bolster their networks, but it also paves the way for cheap or free over-the-air broadband. Companies ranging from Google to Verizon are interested, so you should expect an eclectic mix of services once the devices are ready.

The move should also help tackle temporary bandwidth crunches. The vote greenlights auctions for regional, short-term "priority" rights to part of the spectrum -- if a carrier expects its network to bog down for a short while, for example, it could buy some headroom. This doesn't mean that overcongested networks are a thing of the past, but your provider of choice could have a new way to mitigate those slowdowns.

[Image credit: Karen Bleier/AFP/Getty Images]

All products recommended by Engadget are selected by our editorial team, independent of our parent company. Some of our stories include affiliate links. If you buy something through one of these links, we may earn an affiliate commission.
Comment
Comments
Share
Tweet
Share

Popular on Engadget

Apple program will replace AirPods Pro buds with crackling, ANC issues

Apple program will replace AirPods Pro buds with crackling, ANC issues

View
Chevy will start selling EV retrofit kits in 2021

Chevy will start selling EV retrofit kits in 2021

View
Roborace engineer explains why a driverless racecar drove into a wall

Roborace engineer explains why a driverless racecar drove into a wall

View
$149 Playdate handheld is 'ready to go,' orders start in early 2021

$149 Playdate handheld is 'ready to go,' orders start in early 2021

View
Logitech made official gaming gear for 'League of Legends' band K/DA

Logitech made official gaming gear for 'League of Legends' band K/DA

View

From around the web

Page 1Page 1ear iconeye iconFill 23text filevr