No More Dropped Calls? FCC Wants Airwaves From Broadcasters

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Due to the popularity of iPhones and Blackberries, the FCC may pay TV and radio broadcasters to clear airwaves in hopes of improving high-speed internet access, BusinessWeek reports.

Smartphones are currently clogging networks, resulting in dropped wireless calls (that’s you, AT&T!) and shoddy wireless Internet service. 

The FCC is hoping broadcasters will willingly abandon the airwaves they hold rights to, which would lessen the current burden on mobile networks.

Analysts say broadcasters would get about $6 billion, and the deal would set free about $48 billion in spectrum.

Dennis Wharton, a spokesman for the National Association of Broadcasters, told BusinessWeek:

“The broadcasters that I talk to are excited about the future, and particularly the opportunities afforded by live and local mobile DTV,” Wharton says in an e-mailed statement. “They have no interest in ‘cashing out’ based on a speculative promise from the FCC that we will be receiving money in exchange for spectrum.”

The FCC will present their National Broadband Plan to Congress in March. 

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