The FCC is giving away $300 million to improve data services in rural areas


Living in the city has its hassles, but we usually enjoy the privilege of having better phone service. For those living in rural areas, it can be the complete opposite experience. And that is completely noticeable when one is on the road. In an attempt to further fix this issue, the FCC has decided to launch a new mobile broadband fund, offering a $300 million subsidy to carriers willing to improve rural coverage.

Of course, carriers have to meet certain standards to enjoy all these millions. First, carriers will have to bid and offer the FCC a good deal for their money. Bidding carriers will have to be the lower-priced providers to bring service to an area. The competition will be fierce, as it won’t only be local, but it will extend to other areas’ bidders.

Also, winning bidders are required to deploy either 3G service in 2 years or 4G service in 3 years, covering at least 75% of road miles within the given census tract for which they win support. And if that wasn’t enough, the FCC is also willing to pocket out one-time support of $50 million for tribal lands and $500 million a year for ongoing mobile support.

As many of us Android fans say – More options is always better. For our friends living in the country, there are not many. Said incentive will help rural citizens, as well as frequent travelers get better data service. How many times have we found ourselves without even 3G signal when driving through mountains and farms? And with the way things are now, our smartphones are close to worthless without a good data connection.

The FCC has provided a map that specifies which areas need the most support. So check it out, and here goes for a brighter future!

[Via: Computer World]

Edgar Cervantes

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  1. lowers-priced providers = enough said>

    1. Or bidders are requires 

  2. improve boston and around it. my gn got poor signal here. 

  3. To bad only 100k or less of it will actually be used for it’s intended purpose.

    1. Please provide verifiable evidence. 

    2. yup, execs will end up with new cars while workers are told to stand around and look busy so the funds arent cutoff. Then once they fail to meet the FCC demands they’ll say…”well 300 million just isnt even scratching the surface of the money we need”

      Instead of using the money to better their service without costing them anything like the FCC intends, Its probably easy to guess that this will be used to try to increase profits in high populated suburbs that are 10 minutes away from cities instead of going to the real rural areas.

  4. What happens once the money dries up?  The reason rural coverage is so poor is because the number of potential customers per square mile won’t generate the amount of revenue to make deploying and maintaining the network worthwhile.  Please note the “…and maintaining” part.  Unless the FCC is willing to keep these providers on the dole, I don’t see the long term viability of this sort of thing.

  5. What kind of surcharge is going to be added to our bills to pay for this?

  6. t-mobile stopped data roaming with att last month.

    my new carrier verizon, erected a new 4g ready tower 2 miles from my home. it took a while but, i’m set.
    i hope everybody should have good fortune like me.

  7. I did travel these area with Sprint phones, I did lose the Voice data, but never lost my web connection nor my text message… That`s why I`m sticking to Sprint, because no other carriers can provide me with this… Yes, ma be the are not the best everywhere and not the worst. Oh well, all the carriers at this point, has up and down in their service.

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