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Wi-Fi Gets 5G Airwave Boost as Carmakers Lose Spectrum Fight (1)

Nov. 18, 2020, 8:51 PM

The U.S. Federal Communications Commission voted Wednesday to redeploy airwaves assigned 21 years ago for a vehicle safety system that hasn’t come to fruition, rejecting carmakers’ efforts to hold onto the frequencies.

The change, on a 5-0 vote, follows years of rearguard lobbying by carmakers such as Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. to retain their exclusive hold on the rich airwaves swath they were allotted in 1999.

Since then a new wireless era has arrived, with surging demand for frequencies from mobile phones and other devices that connect over Wi-Fi. In response the FCC has moved to open ...