The wireless industry has cried out against a federal-state panel's recommendation to impose an emergency cap on universal service fund (USF) support for rural carriers. Since most service providers receiving support from the $4 billion fund are wireless carriers, the industry will be hit harder than its wireline counterparts.
"Almost three years after being assigned the task of developing recommendations to reform the high-cost universal service system, the Joint Board has missed the mark," said Steve Largent, president of cell phone association CTIA. "The Joint Board's bias toward legacy wireline networks will undoubtedly disadvantage rural consumers, the majority of which now view wireless as their primary mode of telecommunication. In neglecting to propose a comprehensive set of technology-neutral, market-oriented reforms to the high-cost universal service system, the Joint Board has effectively told rural consumers that they don't deserve high-quality wireless services."
For more on the USF:
- see this article from RCR News