RTG is concerned that the FCC’s inclusion of 4G services in its proposed Mobility Fund, when many areas of the country currently lack 3G services, is overly ambitious considering the limited size of the proposed Mobility Fund. “The Mobility Fund should not be used by the Big Four to upgrade their networks to 4G when rural and remote areas don’t even have 3G coverage,” stated Carri Bennet, RTG’s General Counsel. Further, if the FCC’s reverse auction methodology to distribute Mobility Fund monies favors population over geography, remote rural areas may be slighted. “The FCC’s apparent ‘bang for the buck’ approach may only benefit quasi-rural regions giving the Big Four, who have economies of scale and scope, the ability to put in low ball bids that will thwart smaller carriers who only serve rural areas and whom have already made 2.5G investments in extreme high-cost areas,” noted Carri Bennet.
About RTG – Headquartered in Washington, DC, the Rural Telecommunications Group is a trade association representing rural wireless carriers who serve less than 100,000 subscribers. RTG’s members have joined together to speed delivery of new, efficient and innovative telecommunications technologies to remote and underserved communities. www.ruraltelecomgroup.org @RTGwireless