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August 26, 2009

FCC opens inquiry into US wireless industry

To include new market segments not covered in previous reports, such as device and infrastructure segments

By CBR Staff Writer

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has opened a Notice of Inquiry (NOI) into the wireless industry in an attempt to increase competition in the mobile wireless market to bring more choices and benefits to American consumers.

According to FCC, this NOI builds on the report on mobile wireless competition, released in May, by seeking input on new issues and topics.

The FCC said that it is seeking to improve its understanding of the mobile wireless industry in three main ways. First, the FCC inquires about which analytic framework and data sources will describe competition in the mobile wireless market. Second, it adjusts the inquiry to include new market segments not covered thoroughly in previous reports, such as device and infrastructure segments. Third, it inquires about vertical relationships between ‘upstream’ and ‘downstream’ market segments, and how these relationships affect competition.

The FCC is required to report annually on the state of competition in the ‘commercial mobile services’ market. To reflect an updated view of the mobile wireless market, the FCC intends to name the next report ‘Annual Report and Analysis of Competitive Market Conditions With Respect to Mobile Wireless including Commercial Mobile Services’ (Mobile Wireless Competition Report).

By considering all of the factors that affect competition in the mobile wireless market and applying analytic framework to the data available, the FCC seeks to provide a foundation for policy making with respect to mobile wireless services.

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