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Charter’s Time Warner Cable acquisition gets OK from FCC

Charter’s Time Warner Cable acquisition gets OK from FCC

Late last month, the Justice Department approved Charter's planned acquisition of Time Warner Cable, but as we noted, the merger still required a go-ahead from the Federal Communication Commission. In a statement today, the FCC announced that it has voted in favor of the acquisition, a business move that will result in the second-largest broadband provider in the U.S. In addition to TWC, Charter will be buying Bright House Networks.

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FCC unveils “Nutrition labels” for broadband connections

FCC unveils “Nutrition labels” for broadband connections

When you pick up a box of cereal, or any other food item, you can quickly and easily find out what you're getting by looking at the side. Thanks to a handy nutrition label, you'll find things like calories, sugars, and vitamins per serving, and a full list of ingredients. Now wouldn't it be great if everything you bought had a similar label? Well, it turns out that the FCC would like your broadband service to come with exactly that.

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FCC’s Lifeline now subsidizes Internet for low-income Americans

FCC’s Lifeline now subsidizes Internet for low-income Americans

The FCC has voted in favor of expanding Lifeline, a phone subsidy program that has been around for the last thirty or so years. Under this expansion, low-income individuals and families will be able to get subsidized high-speed Internet service, an essential service in the modern world. The Lifeline program will cover bundled Internet-and-voice services, as well as Internet-only services.

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What the new FCC Internet Privacy rules mean for you

What the new FCC Internet Privacy rules mean for you

On March 10th, 2016, the FCC proposed a set of broadband rules for consumer privacy across the United States. What we're looking at here is what might be - not what is just yet. What you'll find is that FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler is proposing is that "when consumers sign up for internet service, they shouldn't have to sign away their right to privacy." Novel concept, yes?

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Cheaper broadband the key in $9.25 FCC Lifeline subsidy change

Cheaper broadband the key in $9.25 FCC Lifeline subsidy change

The FCC has proposed the biggest changes to the Lifeline program since its creation, paving the way for more affordable broadband for low-income families. Lifeline was established in 1985 as a way to assist those below 135-percent of the poverty line with getting voice call service, initially through landline subsidies but, as cellphones became more mainstream, wireless options too.

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Verizon settles with FCC for $1.35m over ‘supercookies’

Verizon settles with FCC for $1.35m over ‘supercookies’

Remember Verizon’s so-called “supercookies,” an element in part of its technology for hitting unwitting customers with targeted advertisements? The issue caused quite a stir around this time last year, eventually resulting in the government getting involved and Verizon backtracking on its policy. The move was too little, too late though, and now Verizon Wireless has been slapped with a $1.35 million fee courtesy of the Federal Communications Commission.

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FCC allows more but limited LTE-U testing

FCC allows more but limited LTE-U testing

LTE-U or LTE on the Unlicensed spectrum. To be even more technically specific, on the 5 GHz band. It is either the future of mobile data connections or will bring forth Internet apocalypse. Tech companies from all corners of the industry are split on the matter and have even asked the Federal Communications Commission to mediate. The FCC still hasn't taken a formal stance yet, but, in the meantime, it will be allowing those from the pro LTE-U camp to continue some tests and try to prove their position.

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FCC’s radical new proposal will overhaul set top box market

FCC’s radical new proposal will overhaul set top box market

Yesterday, a report surfaced claiming the FCC would soon propose a change involving set top boxes, and such a proposal was indeed made public today. According to the FCC, “Ninety-nine percent of pay-TV subscribers are chained to their set-top boxes because cable and satellite operators have locked up the market.” If the commission gets its way, its proposal will save consumers money currently spent on leasing boxes from providers, and will open the doors for more consumer options.

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FCC’s broadband report details uptick in US Internet speeds

FCC’s broadband report details uptick in US Internet speeds

The FCC’s annual broadband report is in, and as in the past it details the status of broadband Internet access in the United States. The report, officially called the 2015 Measuring Broadband America Fixed Broadband Report, details information on so-called “fixed” ISPs and their network performance. These reports first started in August 2011; with this latest one, the grand total of reports has climbed to five.

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FCC to companies: explain your zero-rating data exemptions

FCC to companies: explain your zero-rating data exemptions

The Federal Communications Commission wants to know more about zero-rating data plans — that is, plans like T-Mobile’s ‘Binge On’ that allow customers to stream content from certain providers without it impacting their data caps. T-Mobile isn’t the only company with such a plan; AT&T and Comcast will have to offer up explanations, too. The FCC’s Chairman Tom Wheeler was careful to state, though, that “this is not an investigation.”

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FCC can’t, or won’t, impose Do Not Track on Google, Facebook

FCC can’t, or won’t, impose Do Not Track on Google, Facebook

The FCC is sometimes seen as the enemy and sometimes as the advocate of consumer rights and interests, depending on which side of the fence you're on. Or on which issue. Recently, its new net neutrality rules have put it on not so friendly terms with some in the Internet and tech businesses. But this latest statement might earn it back some points, at the expense of irking some privacy advocates. It has said that it won't be imposing rules on Internet companies that would block or hinder them from tracking user's online activities.

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Tesla key fob FCC filing hints at location finding

Tesla key fob FCC filing hints at location finding

A new FCC filing for a Tesla key fob has been discovered, offering hints of an updated model with new features. While the existing version uses a 315MHz signal, the new one was detailed to support Bluetooth Low Energy, something that may offer connections to smartphones or be used for data exchange. Fortunately the fob still comes in a cool shape, looking like a mini Model S.

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