FCC Report: Broadband Access Lacking

A new study from the Federal Communications Commission found that between 14 and 24 million Americans lack access to broadband and aren’t about to get access any time soon.

The study released Tuesday (July 20) was conducted in response to a Congressional directive that the FCC find out whether broadband is being deployed to all Americans in a reasonable and timely fashion.

The FCC pointed to the report as more evidence that the U.S. needs the broadband plan issued by the Commission earlier this year, a plan that has generated a lot of controversy.

“Consistent with the findings of the National Broadband Plan, the report points out the great broadband successes in the United states, including as many as 290 million Americans who have gained access to broadband over the past decade. But the statute requires more. It requires the agency to reach a conclusion about whether all, not some, not most, Americans are being served in a reasonable and timely fashion,” said Julius Genachowski, chairman of the FCC.

The report called the “706 Report” provides a list of unserved areas. Recommendations to improve broadband access are the familiar initiatives the FCC has been touting all year including reforming the FCC’s universal service programs, finding more spectrum for mobile broadband, reducing barriers to infrastructure investment, and collecting better broadband data.