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FCC Endorses Expanding Wireless Services

Federal regulators endorsed a plan Thursday to tap unused television airwaves to bring high-speed Internet connections and other wireless technologies to more people, especially in rural areas.

"It promises to dramatically increase the availability and quality of wireless Internet connections , the equivalent of doubling the number of lanes on a congested highway," said Michael Powell, chairman of the Federal Communications Commission.

Commissioners voted unanimously to begin the lengthy rulemaking process.

Opposing the proposal are television broadcasters, who say it would disrupt service for over-the-air television signals for millions of people.

"Free, over-the-air television provides invaluable news, information and entertainment to local communities all over America and serves as a lifeline to citizens in times of crisis," said Edward Fritts, president of the National Association of Broadcasters.

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