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FCC Unveils New Map Showing Mobile Broadband Coverage

The FCC just released a new map showing mobile broadband coverage from the nation’s four major providers. The map aims to improve on previous data and is the first test of the criteria from the Broadband DATA Act.

US Map
Last week, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) unveiled a new map with information on mobile broadband coverage from the four largest mobile providers in the U.S. — AT&T Mobility, T-Mobile, UScellular and Verizon.

The FCC has been working to improve the information in its Internet coverage maps after concerns on inaccuracy. According to the announcement, this map represents a "significant improvement" over previous data from the agency.

The map details 4G LTE data and voice mobile coverage up to May 15, 2021.

Notably, this map serves as a public test of criteria developed under the Broadband DATA Act, which was passed in March 2020. This is the first time the FCC has created a map using these standardized mobile data specifications, which aim to increase consistency in the data collected.

Individuals can use the map to see where they can receive 4G LTE broadband service at a minimum download speed of five megabits per second and minimum upload speed of one megabit per second.

Map users can enter specific addresses to visualize coverage, or they can toggle between different colored layers to compare coverage from different providers.

Data collection took place voluntarily through FCC Form 477.

“Today’s new map represents progress in our efforts to implement the Broadband DATA Act and build next-generation broadband maps that can help to connect 100 percent of Americans,” said Acting FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel in the announcement.

FCC’s Broadband Data Task Force continues efforts on this front in several ways. For example, the agency is seeking comment on the technical details of challenge and verification processes for maps. The creation of a challenge process is another requirement laid out by the Broadband DATA Act.

In addition, an Aug. 12 webinar held by the task force will address these issues. Consumers and authorities will be able to provide input to support the ongoing effort of improving the accuracy of the maps.