The FCC has voted to seek comment on a proposal to give out up to $9 billion over a decade for 5G buildouts, but some commissioners had issues with the timing of the handout.
That funding is about $450 million per year more than the Universal Service Fund (USF) Mobility Fund allocation that it is replacing. The extra money will also come from USF. The FCC will target rural areas that will be unlikely to get 5G absent that support.
The proposal pulls the plug on the $4.5 billion Mobility Fund Phase II program and instead creates a 5G Fund that would put up to $9 billion toward Universal Service Fund support for 5G mobile wireless in rural areas to help close the digital divide.