At an event in Michigan yesterday, President Obama announced a plan to greatly expand the reach of wireless broadband. The Washington Post’s Cecilia Kang has the details:
Obama unveiled an ambitious blueprint to use $18 billion in federal funds to get 98 percent of the nation connected to the Internet on smartphones and tablet computers in five years.
To get there, the federal government will try to bring more radiowaves into the hands of wireless carriers to bolster the nation’s networks and prevent a jam of Internet traffic. He said he hoped to auction airwaves currently in the hands of television stations and government agencies to raise about $27.8 billion.
And with the money raised, the government would fund new rural 4G wireless networks and a mobile communications system for fire, policy and emergency responders. The remaining funds raised — about $10 billion — would go toward lowering the federal deficit over the next decade.