TracFone Wireless, Inc. Issues Fact Sheet About Wireless Broadband Pilot
MIAMI, Feb. 7, 2013
MIAMI, Feb.7, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --TracFone Wireless, Inc., issued
the following fact sheet today about the wireless broadband pilot program it
is undertaking at the direction of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC)
to benefit income-eligible households by "increasing digital literacy and use
of the Internet [to] help bridge the skills gap [and] reduce job search
Fact #1: The FCC's Wireless broadband pilot program is seeking ways to bridge
the digital divide, while using the best practices in doing so. As the FCC
explains: "The primary goal of the Pilot Program is to gather high-quality
data that will help identify effective approaches to increasing broadband
adoption and retention by low-income consumers …" To achieve this goal in the
selection process, the FCC strongly favored pilot projects designed as field
experiments that implement standard best practices common among field
experiments. TracFone's pilot project is listed by the FCC as an example of
such a carefully designed field experiment.
Fact #2: All aspects of the TracFone pilot project application and the FCC
selection process are a matter of public record. Full documentation about
all proposals and why individual pilot projects were selected by the FCC is
available at http://apps.fcc.gov/ecfs/comment/view?id=6017161168 and generally
through the FCC's Electronic Comment Filing System at
Fact #3: In a competitive process, the FCC chose TracFone Wireless as one of
a number of companies to carry out wireless broadband pilot projects for the
FCC. A total of 14 pilot programs were authorized by the FCC. TracFone
submitted two different pilot project proposals, one of which was selected.
Fact #4: The TracFone pilot project is limited to 12 months. Federal
Lifeline support for the TracFone pilot project is capped at $915,000.
Fact #5: The TracFone pilot project will be carried out in Florida, Maryland,
Texas, Washington, Wisconsin and Massachusetts. The project will study the
effects of subsidy amounts and discounted hardware. TracFone, in partnership
with Technology Goes Home, will test the effect of both discounted price and
hardware cost on mobile broadband adoption and retention using four variations
in its broadband service plans and one control group randomly assigned over a
large, geographically diverse sample. By offering varying combinations of
free or discounted hardware and $10 or $20 per month service, low-income
customers' sensitivity to upfront and ongoing prices can be measured.
Fact #6: Taxpayers do not pay a penny for wireless Lifeline, including pilot
projects. Cutting the Lifeline program or removing funds for broadband pilot
programs will not reduce the federal deficit by one cent. That is because
federal funds do not pay for Lifeline. The program is not funded with tax
dollars. Instead, this program is funded by contributions from
telecommunications companies, which can elect to share the costs of those
contributions with their subscribers. Companies that offer free wireless cell
phone services pay for the phone themselves. Far from imposing a burden on
taxpayers, wireless Lifeline has been documented to help low-income people
find and keep jobs, which ultimately reduces spending on public assistance
Fact #7: TracFone has been a leader in promoting tight oversight of the
overall wireless Lifeline program to control fraud and abuse. There is a
strict prohibition against beneficiaries receiving Lifeline benefits for more
than one phone service. The FCC recently took actions to further tighten
eligibility requirements and transparency in the wireless Lifeline program.
Many of the eligibility requirements that were adopted were done so at the
urging of TracFone Wireless. The FCC included such TracFone-backed reforms as
a 60-day non-usage policy, identity checks by using the individual's name,
date of birth, Social Security Number and address, and most importantly, the
creation of a national database to verify applicant information by 2013.
TracFone has been a proven leader in preventing waste, fraud and abuse and is
currently working to form public/private partnerships with states to help
create Lifeline eligibility databases and to enable Lifeline providers to
access existing state databases.
TracFone Wireless, Inc. is a subsidiary of America Movil S.A.B. de C.V.
("AMX") (BMV: AMX; NYSE: AMX; Nasdaq: AMOV; LATIBEX: XAMXL), AMX is the
leading provider of wireless services in Latin America.
SOURCE TracFone Wireless, Inc., Miami, FL
Contact: Jose A. Fuentes, +1-305-715-3727, email@example.com.
Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.