President Barack Obama today announced the White House has announced a $2 billion package to repair cell phone equipment, according to a White House press release.
“We’re proud of the fact that this program is part of a multi-year effort to help restore America’s vital communications infrastructure,” said Obama.
“These efforts are not just about repairing phones and tablets, they’re also about ensuring that we can communicate with each other and with the world, even when cell phone networks are down.”
The President is directing the Department of Homeland Security to award contracts to vendors in the U.S. for repair and replacement of communications equipment, which could include cell phone, cable television, radio and satellite communications equipment.
The President has previously indicated he wants to make the repair of cell phone and internet service a national priority.
(AP Photo/White House) President Barack Obama on Tuesday announced the $2 million grant for the National Center for Mobile Telecommunications Research (NCMTR) for the purpose of supporting research and development in cell phone communications, a task that was previously accomplished by the U:National Center for Wireless Telecommunications Research, an independent organization.
The NCMTR is the nation’s only organization dedicated to researching and developing cell phone technologies and is responsible for the development of standards and tools to improve the quality of cell service, the White, House said in a statement.
Obama has been critical of AT&T and Verizon in the past for not upgrading their networks to keep up with the rapidly growing popularity of smartphones.
He has also accused AT&s telecommunications companies of misleading customers about the security of their services.
(AP Photos/Pablo Martinez Monsivais) Obama announced the grant on Tuesday at the Whitehouse, which he described as a way to “strengthen the nations cell phone infrastructure” and “provide a vital safety net for the millions of Americans who depend on the cellular telephone.”
The White House said the grants will help support research and technology development that will allow for better cell phone technology and services, such as cellular voice services, cell phone roaming, and the development and deployment of more effective encryption technologies, such, as encryption, secure messaging and messaging applications.
For more information on the President’s initiative, visit the WhiteHouse.gov/cellphones.