FCC’s $300 million reverse auction hopes to bring 3G access to rural areas in the U.S.

While many of you complain about not having access to fast 4G LTE networks, there’s some poor souls out there in the U.S. that still don’t even have access to a 3G network! The FCC has released an interactive map that shows which parts of the country still don’t have access to a reliable 3G/4G network.

In an effort to help these areas get better network access, the FCC will be holding a $300 million reverse auction for these rural zones. The winner of the reverse auction will receive a one-time payment of $300 million in order to fund the build out of wireless data in rural areas.

Here is what FCC Chair Julius Genachowski had to say in regards to the matter:

As our new map demonstrates, millions of Americans still live, work, and travel in areas where advanced mobile networks have not been built out. Through the FCC’s Connect America Fund, we’re helping complete our nation’s wired and wireless infrastructure, which will lead to job creation, economic growth, and innovation in the 21st century.

The interactive map allows you to zoom into 3G dead zones by county (in gray) and allows you to see how many unserved blocks, tracts, road miles, and population are without at least 3G coverage. Most of the people in the dark are in the west coast of the country.

Unfortunately, it’s going to be a while before reliable data access is available in those dead zones; the FCC’s reverse auction won’t begin until September 27, 2012.



Source: FCC FCC Mapbox Map | via The Verge