By Dave Limp
April 21, 2020 at 5:00 am ET
In the middle of a global health crisis due to the coronavirus pandemic, millions of Americans are doing their part and staying home during this unprecedented time. Now, more than ever, we are relying on the power of wireless technology to stay connected and informed in almost every single aspect of our daily lives.
People nationwide are working remotely, using in-home Wi-Fi to perform their job duties and conduct meetings via video conference. Children in every state are depending on Wi-Fi and devices to continue their schoolwork from the safety of their homes. Families everywhere are using wireless devices and applications to stay connected and check on neighbors, loved ones, and relatives who are most vulnerable. In addition, businesses across the country are depending on connectivity and reliable Wi-Fi to keep our economy moving and to meet the needs of consumers.
At Amazon, our employees are working around the clock to bring critical products and services to our customers, who are staying safe in their homes. Wireless connectivity – and the unlicensed spectrum that Wi-Fi technology relies upon – is helping to make this happen by keeping our operations and logistics network functioning. Without well-performing wireless technologies, it would be nearly impossible for our teams to efficiently stow, pick, pack, ship and deliver orders to our customers.
Whether it is for educational, work, or home purposes, it is clear that Wi-Fi and wireless connectivity are an essential part of our daily lives. For over 20 years, access to the unlicensed Wi-Fi spectrum has driven an incredible amount of innovation for both consumers and businesses alike. Because of this, Amazon strongly supports the latest efforts by the Federal Communications Commission to expand access to unlicensed spectrum and create new opportunities for Wi-Fi.
Under the leadership of Chairman Ajit Pai, the FCC has made a bold move to expand wireless connectivity by proposing to make the entire 6 GHz band available for unlicensed use. Making this band – all 1200 megahertz – available for unlicensed use is the most significant allocation of unlicensed spectrum to occur in years. This spectrum will play a critical role in supporting the development of innovative wireless devices and technologies and in expanding in-home Wi-Fi.
Amazon will use the 6 GHz spectrum to deliver a smarter, faster, and more convenient customer experience. Amazon fulfillment centers will be able to use this spectrum and its wide channels and greater capacity to support our associates as they fulfill and deliver customer orders. With this spectrum, Amazon’s eero will be able to innovate and develop the next generation of home wifi systems. This enhanced home wifi, and more efficient deliveries, has never been more important.
The FCC has taken several steps in recent weeks to ensure Americans remain connected during this public health crisis. We commend Chairman Pai and the FCC for taking steps to expand access to unlicensed spectrum moving forward and ultimately paving the way to a more innovative future. It is what businesses need to operate and what American consumers deserve.
Dave Limp is Amazon’s senior vice president of devices and services.
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