Obama goes FTW with expanded wireless Internet access

Posted by Lydia Leavitt

In President Obama’s most recent State of the Union address, he talked about expanding wireless Internet access across America, a plan which was further defined in a White House blog post today.

Obama’s plan to "win the future" is fueled by creating the infrastructure for high-speed wireless Internet across America to help "businesses to grow faster, students to learn more, and public safety officials to access state-of-the-art, secure, nationwide, and interoperable mobile communications."

The President’s lofty goal is to make high-speed wireless Internet available to 98 percent of Americans within the next five years.

Obama goes FTW with expanded wireless Internet accessIn particular, Obama’s initiative will adopt "4G" technology, with Internet speeds ten times faster than current high speed wireless services.

Obama’s plan is to spur innovation in wireless services, equipment, and applications industries while improving public safety.

The President hopes that the improved Internet availability will help the United States win the future and compete in the 21st century economy.

To do this, Obama outlined a Wireless Innovation and Infrastructure Initiative with steps necessary to achieve the goal.

Part of the initiative is to free up 500 MHz of spectrum space to create an interoperable wireless network for public safety, which will allegedly reduce the national deficit by approximately $10 billion.

The government plans to give $3 billion of spectrum proceeds saved to research and development of emerging wireless technologies and applications. Another $10.7 billion will go to support and development of national wireless broadband networks for public safety agencies

President Obama will discuss the plan at Northern Michigan University, a school where the university’s WiMAX network has enabled a long distance learning program for students worldwide.

Obama has already made some progress on his initiative, calling for a more efficient use of the spectrum and boosting the deployment and adoption of broadband technology as part of The Recovery Act.