Washington, D.C. — Recent activity on Capitol Hill and at the FCC shows progress on a much-needed path forward for mid-band spectrum, which will be crucial for providing better coverage and faster speeds to meet vigorous consumer demand.  Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Maggie Hassan (D-NH) introduced bipartisan legislation Tuesday that would chart a path forward on mid-band spectrum, teeing up future auctions, and setting aside spectrum for unlicensed use while also studying new bands.  

Tomorrow, the FCC will vote on a Notice of Inquiry that will seek input from the public on new opportunities and effective use of spectrum bands between 3.7 GHz and 24 GHz.

CCIA is encouraged by these efforts as freeing up mid-band spectrum will be crucial for next generation 5G wireless technology.  5G networks will support a wide range of applications and uses with greater capacity, faster speeds, and lower latency.  Growing wireless demand not just from consumers but also doctors and hospitals seeking telehealth, businesses looking to improve their supply chains and connectivity, and municipalities looking for greater efficiency.

5G networks will require licensed and unlicensed spectrum in low, mid and higher bands than what is currently available.  Policymakers have enabled great strides in the global race to 5G with the recent incentive auction opening up low-band spectrum and the FCC’s Spectrum Frontiers proceeding focusing on high-band.  But, to stay competitive globally, we also need to look at mid-band spectrum.  

The following can be attributed to CCIA President & CEO Ed Black:

“Connectivity is crucial for our economy.  To stay competitive in the global race for 5G, we need more spectrum of all types to fill these needs.  Other countries like China, Japan, South Korea, and Europe are already addressing spectrum needs for 5G, so we need to accelerate our efforts.  While much progress has been made in lower and higher bands, it’s the gap in mid-band that needs to be filled.  With the bipartisan Senate bill and the FCC’s NOI, we’re now seeing a path forward on mid-band spectrum that will be crucial to ensuring faster, more reliable networks that will be catalysts for innovation, economic growth, and jobs.”

For media inquiries, please contact Heather Greenfield: hgreenfield@ccianet.org

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