Monday, March 10, 2014

The FCC is Updating the E-Rate Program

The FCC wants to update the E-rate program. The FCC is seeking focused comments about how to improve the E-rate program, its administration, and the speeds to the schools.

"The Federal Communications Commission has gone public with plans to "reprioritize" existing E-rate funds over the next two years in order to invest an additional $2 billion toward putting broadband and wireless networks into 15,000 schools representing 20 million students. The news comes at the same time as an announcement from the White House that three major telecommunications service providers are committing $100 million each to providing broadband and wireless access and related services to schools and students over the next three to four years." [thejournal]

Two other updates from the FCC this week.

One is that "FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler announced that the commission has a new task force called Connect2Health. The new task force will be led by Michele Ellison and will focus on accelerating “the adoption of health care technologies by leveraging broadband and other next-gen communications services." [source] [FCC notice]

The final announcement is that DISH Networks "bought all of the 1900 MHz licenses in a frequency auction that wrapped up last week, using a shell company to hide its name. The satellite provider paid just short of $1.6 billion for the airwaves." [engadget] To clarify that means that DISH got 2 separate (non-contiguous) blocks of spectrum: "The agency has voted in favor of auctioning off two slices of 1,900MHz spectrum, the lower H block (1,915MHz to 1,920MHz) and upper H block (1,995MHz to 2,000MHz)". [Thx Chuck]

No comments: