By 2014, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) estimates that average mobile wireless data usage per line will grow by 3506%. Similarly, Cisco has concluded that mobile data traffic will grow at a compound annual growth rate of 92% between 2010 and 2015. To satisfy the expected demand for wireless broadband services in 2020, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) estimates that the US will need as much as 1720 MHz of spectrum devoted to those services. Because it only has a fraction of that spectrum currently available for such use, however, the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) is pushing for increased spectrum in a new eight-page document, "Broadband Spectrum: The Engine for Innovation, Job Growth, and Advancement of Social Priorities."

This call-to-action notes that the spectrum reallocations to mobile services, which occurred from 1994 to 2000, led to a 250% increase in investment and a 300% rise in jobs in the mobile market. Just a 1% increase in broadband deployment today could result in as many as 300,000 new jobs, asserts the TIA document. With new wireless-broadband investments of $17.4 billion, gross domestic product could grow to an estimated $184.1 billion, while 6.3 million jobs are created within 24 months.

In addition to fueling a sluggish economy, TIA points to productivity gains of $860 billion by 2016 if the deployment of wireless-broadband technologies and applications is accelerated. For example, approximately $3.6 billion could be saved, thanks to improved inventory management and inventory-loss reductions. The repurposing of spectrum for wireless-broadband use also can provide numerous societal benefitsespecially in areas like public safety, personal security, healthcare, and education. Without the timely reallocation of spectrum for wireless broadband, however, US consumers could instead begin to experience wireless data gridlock. TIA is therefore supporting the creation of mechanisms that will facilitate the fast, flexible re-purposing of spectrum, such as voluntary incentive auctions.

Telecommunications Industry Association, 2500 Wilson Blvd., Suite 300, Arlington, VA 22201; (703) 907-7700, FAX: (703) 907-7727, www.tiaonline.org.