Last night, we updated our Facebook page with new material about the U.S. wireless industry to help inform policymakers and consumers about a variety of topics, including spectrum. We also highlighted some wireless industry stats and policy issues. CTIA created a tab for consumers with tips on everything from parental control features and tools to debunking urban myths.
We took the Facebook spectrum tab and turned it into a brochure to explain the facts about spectrum. As you can see, we used the analogy of a highway to explain spectrum. The Cisco Visual Networking Index estimates the monthly mobile data traffic will increase 20 times from today’s usage by 2015, which explains why we need more “lanes” (or spectrum) so we can meet demand.
In large cities, television broadcasters were given 300 MHz of spectrum yet in many markets they use less than half that amount. Unlike wireless technology where consumers determine when, how and where they can get the information, broadcasters dictate when and how they want to provide service.
Fortunately, the President, members of Congress, FCC Chairman and many FCC Commissioners recognize that repurposing spectrum for wireless broadband would provide numerous benefits for consumers and the economy. In addition to providing greater capacity for more devices and faster speeds, economist predict that for every $1 invested in wireless broadband, an additional $7–10 would be created for U.S. GDP.
The FCC’s National Broadband Plan calls for making 500 MHz of spectrum available for wireless use within the next ten years, with 300 MHz ready in five years. A voluntary auction of unused or underused TV broadcast spectrum is a sensible place to start. An auction would net at least $33 billion in revenue for U.S. Treasury. In turn, CTIA’s members would continue to invest billions to deliver innovative, cutting-edge wireless broadband services for Americans.