Each year, the FCC releases a report on the state of competition in the mobile wireless industry. In 1993, Congress created the statutory classification of Commercial Mobile Services - now known as Commercial Mobile Radio Services, or "CMRS" - to promote the consistent regulation of mobile radio services that are similar in nature. At the same time, Congress established the promotion of competition as a fundamental goal for CMRS policy formation and regulation. To measure progress toward this goal, Congress required the FCC to submit annual reports that analyze competitive conditions in the industry.
The first thirteen annual reports were known as “Annual CMRS Competition Reports.” Starting with the fourteenth report, the name changed to “Mobile Wireless Competition Reports” to reflect fundamental shifts in the mobile marketplace. The more recent reports integrate an analysis of CMRS into an analysis of all mobile wireless services, such as voice, messaging, and broadband. They also examine the role of the interrelated “upstream” and “downstream” segments of the industry – such as spectrum, infrastructure, and devices – in mobile wireless competition.
Mobile wireless competition reports contain data and information that the FCC uses to analyze competition in the mobile wireless industry, including:
- the number of subscribers and connected devices;
- price metrics;
- usage levels;
- percentage of the population covered by a certain number of providers;
- investment and profitability measures; and
- market concentration figures
More recent reports also examine, among other things:
- spectrum holdings;
- devices; and
- mobile operating systems and applications