September 28, 2018
MWCA18 in Review: Key Wireless Policy Priorities .
After a busy Mobile World Congress Americas, the CTIA team is back in D.C. and echoing the words of Commissioner Rosenworcel, we’re feeling energized by all the exciting wireless things we saw, heard and experienced and their promise for our connected future.
I want to extend a special thank you to the policymakers and experts that joined us at MWCA as part of our Everything Policy track. We appreciate you sharing the latest wireless news from your agencies and offices, as well as your perspectives and ideas on wireless policy.
Policymakers discussed the following:
The need for more spectrum
NTIA Administrator Redl shared the agency’s work to make more spectrum available, including investigations of the 1300-1350 MHz, 3100-3450 MHz, 3450-3550 MHz and 3700-4200 MHz bands.
The importance of a dynamic spectrum auction process
Commissioner Rosenworcel discussed her hopes for the continued success of the spectrum allocation process, calling for the thoughtful valuation of spectrum and voicing her confidence in the FCC’s spectrum auctions.
The value of globally harmonizing spectrum
Commissioner O’Rielly shared his thoughts on the importance of harmonizing spectrum bands across the world. He also encouraged foreign governments and international organizations to consider the success of the U.S.’s spectrum model.
“…harmonization lowers the cost of production, deployment, and service offerings, meaning enormous advantages for consumers and nations.” – FCC Commissioner Mike O’Rielly
“U.S. success… has been grounded in policies designed to (1) make the spectrum attractive for all industry participants and uses, (2) put it to its highest value use, and (3) ensure that the certainty exists to foster the necessary environment to promote investment and deployment.” – FCC Commissioner Mike O’Rielly
The need to densify wireless infrastructure to support next-gen networks
Commissioner Carr reiterated the importance of wireless investment in small cell infrastructure installations for tomorrow’s 5G networks. Commissioner Rosenworcel also discussed the need for dense wireless networks.
“To [realize future wireless network capabilities]… we will need an unprecedented level of network densification, so imagine base stations miniaturized and embedded all around us.” – FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel
"The private sector, not the government, is planning to invest more than a quarter-trillion dollars to densify their networks with new small cells, which are the building blocks of 5G.” – FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr
The importance of efficient, cost-effective wireless siting processes
Commissioner Carr explained why this issue has had such a big impact on the Race to 5G. NTIA Administrator Redl also shared NTIA’s work to streamline siting on federal lands.
“To upgrade our networks—to win the race to 5G—we need to upgrade our rules. Until recently, our approach to infrastructure assumed that every new cell site was a large, 200-foot tower. That meant long and costly reviews. And that makes no sense when 80 percent of all new deployments are going to be small cells—roughly backpack-sized antennas that can attach to existing utility poles.” – FCC Commissioner Brendan Carr
“The Administration has prioritized efforts to spur investment in broadband infrastructure… Congress has weighed in here as well. The MOBILE NOW legislation included sections crafted to promote easier siting of communications facilities on federal land.”- NTIA Administrator David Redl
The U.S. needs common sense policies like these and others discussed at MWCA to remain the global leader in wireless. We look forward to continuing to work with policymakers to build a dynamic future for wireless networks and bring the promise of 5G to Americans across the country.