The official FCC definition of broadband has been stuck at 25 Mbps download and 3 Mbps upload since 2015. Meanwhile, the world has changed and internet usage has continued to accelerate. So, the FCC is opening an inquiry into raising that definition to 100 Mbps by 20 Mbps.
The new proposed speed definition is hardly revolutionary. The 100/20 standard is already baked into federal and state funding programs. What is interesting about the FCC's inquiry is that they are also seeking comment on setting a separate national goal of 1 Gbps/500 Mbps for the future. Now we're talking broadband!
In addition to adjusting the broadband definition, the FCC Notice of Inquiry will also examine the universal service goals of Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act.
“During the pandemic and even before it, the needs of internet users surpassed the FCC’s 25/3 standard for broadband. This standard is not only outdated, it masks the extent to which low-income neighborhoods and rural communities are being left offline and left behind,” said Chairwoman Rosenworcel. “In order to get big things done, it is essential to set big goals. That is why we are kicking off this inquiry to update our national broadband standard and also set a long-term goal for gigabit speeds.
Broadband Bytes News
Presented by the Community Broadband Action Network and curated by Curtis Dean.