The first-generation mobile phones that used the same radio technology as Apple and Google were sold in the United States and the UK, but the industry is facing new challenges, as smartphones continue to evolve and the price of the antennas and antennas locator is rising.
Read moreThe US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) said that it will introduce new rules to encourage wireless service providers to buy local antennas and transmitters, a move that will require the companies to obtain licenses for the use of their equipment.
The FCC said it will require service providers that use “radio technology” that is used to provide the wireless service to obtain a license, which can be expensive.
“We believe it’s critical that these companies make sure they’re doing it legally,” FCC Chairman Ajit Pai said in a statement.
“There are hundreds of millions of people in the US who don’t have access to a television antenna or antenna locator.
They’re paying a lot of money for them.”
But the move to require service companies to buy a license could lead to an exodus of large companies from the market, said Steve Kohn, an analyst with MoffettNathanson Research.
The rules, which are being considered by the FCC, are expected to go into effect next month, but it is unclear how soon they will be enforced.
The FCC also said it is considering imposing stricter requirements on the companies that sell the antennas.
“The commission will examine how to make sure that companies like Dish are making it clear that the rules are enforceable and that they are complying with them,” said Michael Copps, a senior analyst at Moffett Nathanson.
The moves are a reaction to a number of incidents in which customers of wireless service companies were charged more than the actual cost of their services, including charges of $10 for a mobile phone and $30 for a cellular service, the FCC said.
While it is unlikely that the FCC will have the authority to enforce the new rules, the agency is expected to do so, said John Carnevale, an associate professor of electrical engineering at the University of California, Irvine.
Carnevale said that if the rules were enforced, companies could use the fees to offset costs of building new antennas and transmitting their services.
“If they do this, then it’s likely that they can sell the devices for a lot less than they originally paid for them, and they can pay the FCC to cover their costs,” Carneval said.
The move to impose tougher rules on wireless service firms could force some of the biggest players in the industry to seek a new license to offer their services in the U.S., where the price is typically lower.
Dish and Verizon Wireless are both licensed to provide video services in many parts of the U, while Apple and Nokia are also licensed to offer wireless service.