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Official FCC Blog

August, 2010

Its about we

August 5, 2010

[[wysiwyg_imageupload:158:height=100,width=70]]This week the Federal Communications Commission, acting as a partner in the National Broadband Map for the National Telecommunications and Information Administration is releasing a transfer data model of the State Broadband Data Development Program data from state ‘Awardees’ to us here at the FCC.  I just want to comment on a couple of things with this news.

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Do you know your cloud speed?

by Johnnie Muongpack, New Media
August 4, 2010

[[wysiwyg_imageupload:197:height=100,width=70]]"The Cloud", the current buzz word running through the Federal government these days. It's helping to change the way we view, manage and access servers. If you are still learning about "the cloud" and want to know how it works, watch this video.
We know how it works, but how do we test the performance of a Cloud service? One new tool called Cloudsleuth (in beta) helps to answer these questions by visualizing the user experience. What it measures are the response time and availability measured by the Gomez Performance Network. This metric relies on two different components of the GPN, Gomez Active Backbone nodes and Gomez Last Mile peers. You can read more about the GPN here.
What's great about the tool is the ability to test the response time of the Cloud. As you know we love to test speeds, try it yourself with our consumer broadband test. For example, since we are located in Washington, DC, the test shows that accessing a cloud in this area yields a response time of .5 sec. But if I had accessed that cloud in Los Angeles, the test shows a response time of 5.5 sec longer. Knowing this information can help your internal workflows or compare performance when choosing a cloud service.
Currently, monitored providers include Microsoft Azure, OpSource, Amazon EC2, GoGrid, Google, and Rackspace Cloud.

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Data Innovation Initiative: Spectrum Auctions - Data, Benefits Abound

August 4, 2010

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Data is important to the success of the FCC in carrying out its responsibilities. One such responsibility is management of wireless spectrum, including the FCC's spectrum auction program. Spectrum auctions are widely recognized as the most efficient, effective, and transparent means to assign initial commercial licenses to use the nation's airwaves. They help to ensure that spectrum resources are put to their best economic use – and wireless service has taken off as a result.

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CTIA, the Wireless Association, estimates that there are now over 285 million wireless subscribers in the US, generating revenue of over $150 billion annually. And, FCC spectrum auctions have generated $52 billion in revenue since the program's inception. When one considers the additional tax revenue from a growing industry, as well as the "consumer surplus" of wireless services, the benefit of auctions look even more significant as a means to facilitate wireless growth.

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/Consumers Guide

August 3, 2010

Earlier this month, we launched the Consumer Help Center. If you haven't already had a chance to explore our key features, this video guides you through some consumer tools you can use, such as how to:

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Foreign Diplomacy In D.C.

by Mignon Clyburn, FCC Commissioner
August 2, 2010

I had the pleasure last week of meeting several distinguished international colleagues, beginning on Tuesday morning, with a delegation from the Comisión del Mercado de las Telecomunicaciones (CMT). Members of the Spanish telecommunications regulatory authority met with various U.S. companies and government agencies to learn more about the U.S. telecommunications market, and specifically, the FCC’s regulatory agenda—particularly in the area of broadband deployment, open Internet, next generation networks, and Internet governance. Then on Wednesday afternoon I had a delightful and informative meeting with Emmanuel Gabla, Commissioner for the Conseil Superieur de l’Audiovisuel (CSA) and his delegation. Among the many obligations of CSA is the responsibility for implementing France’s digital television transition. The French began the switch to standard definition DTV in 2009 on a regional basis and established a 2011 cutoff for all analog TV broadcasts. In France, several agencies govern different aspects of communications policy. Since Commissioner Gabla has worked at agencies that regulate the wireline, wireless, and now media communications, he was able to educate me on the history of a wide-range of French communications policy. I really appreciate the time that these delegations spent with me this week and would like to recognize the tremendous support of Mindel De La Torre and her staff at the International Bureau for making these exchanges possible.

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