FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is pushing the CTIA to amend its policies so that carriers would be more proactive in allowing consumers to unlock their phones. Wheeler said the CTIA and the wireless industry should act by year-end or expect the FCC to issue regulations on the issue.
As the shutdown of the federal government grinds into its fourth day and appears likely to last through the weekend, analysts say that a prolonged shuttering of government operations could impact the FCC and other agencies' agendas on technology policy, especially for wireless spectrum and auctions.
At the Obama administration's direction, the National Telecommunications and Information Administration petitioned the FCC to mandate that carriers unlock mobile phones and tablets free of charge and let customers who have met their contractual obligations switch to another carrier.
The Obama administration on Saturday effectively vetoed a looming U.S. import ban on older models of Apple's iPhone and iPad, overturning a ruling from the U.S. International Trade Commission in a rare decision that dealt a blow to Apple rival Samsung Electronics and could change how paint battles are fought.
President Obama nominated Michael O'Rielly, a top aide to Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), for a spot as one of the two Republican commissioners of the FCC.
Tom Wheeler, the former CTIA chief who President Obama nominated to head the FCC, largely steered clear of controversy at his confirmation hearing, winning praise from senators of both parties. However, Wheeler did say he would review mergers between carriers and other companies on the merits of the deals, and not on the basis of how approving them might or might not change regulations.
President Obama signed a White House memorandum that orders federal agencies to more efficiently use the spectrum they control and make it easier to share the airwaves with carriers as part of a multi-pronged effort to free up more spectrum for wireless broadband.
Former CTIA chief Tom Wheeler will replace Julius Genachowski as chairman of the FCC, pending Senate confirmation. Mignon Clyburn, the senior Democrat on the panel, will take over as interim chairwoman as Wheeler awaits confirmation.
President Obama is expected to nominate former CTIA chief Tom Wheeler to be the next chairman of the FCC, according to multiple reports, which would place the former telecom industry lobbyist at the head of regulating an increasingly complex wireless industry.
Tom Wheeler, a former CTIA president who is now a venture capitalist and a larger donor to President Obama, is a lead choice to succeed Julius Genachowski as the chairman of the FCC, according to a TIME report.