We're not usually so inclined to report on newly-introduced legislative bills, but the Next Generation Wireless Disclosure act tugs on our heart strings in just the right way. And as the name suggests, its purpose is to mandate that carriers more clearly define what exactly they mean by "4G," which so far we've so far seen mean anything from LTE to sub-HSPA+ levels.
Sponsored by US Senate Democrats Richard Blumenthal (Conneticut), Amy Klobuchar (Minnesota), and Al Franken (Minnesota), the bill parallels a similar one introduced this past June by Democratic House member Anna Eshoo (California). We haven't been able to obtain a copy of the Senate bill, but as it reportedly mirrors Eshoo's version (HR 2281), here's what we gather from that: the bill would require carriers to disclose the guaranteed minimum data speeds, network reliability, coverage area maps, and technology used to provide their definition of 4G service, among other related and pertinent information.
The CTIA wasted no time in issuing a statement against the bill. In defense of the carriers, VP of Government Affairs Jot Carpenter said the legislator instead should focus on "the real issue, which is making sure that America's wireless carriers have sufficient spectrum to lead the world in the race to deploy 4G services." Full statement, if you're so inclined, is after the break.
"As we have said before, this bill proposes to add an additional layer of regulation to a new and exciting set of services, while ignoring the fact that wireless is an inherently complex and dynamic environment in which network speeds can vary depending on a wide variety of factors, such as weather, terrain and foliage. Congress should not impose new regulations. Instead, they should focus on the real issue, which is making sure that America's wireless carriers have sufficient spectrum to lead the world in the race to deploy 4G services."