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These Guys Get It

BY: TOM GURR

Consumers are increasingly dependent on wireless devices, and that trend will continue (mobile data is expected to grow by 300% in the next few years).  While the flexibility and freedom to connect to the resources of the Internet and each other simplifies and improves our lives, how important is it to broader society, really?

Well, let’s look at some facts:

Economic growth:  The wireless industry directly/indirectly employs more than 3.8 million Americans.  And while total private sector jobs fell by 5.3 million between April 2007 and June 2011, the U.S. wireless industry added almost 1.6 million new jobs in the same time period.

Healthcare: A recent study conducted by the Center for Connected Health shows that wireless connectivity can positively impact patient engagement, clinical outcomes and operational workflow in remote monitoring programs.

Education: Multiple studies show that students who have access to wireless connectivity in class improves classroom performance.  In fact, students in California saw their math scores go up 20% in one year by using iPads.

With all this in mind, we need to tip our cap to Oregon’s US Senator Ron Wyden who recently introduced the Wireless Tax Fairness Act.  The act prevents states and municipal governments from creating a barrier to an individual’s use of these vital tools with new taxes.  Wyden says, “Mobile voice and data services are not the luxury items they may have once been considered” and “Excessively taxing these goods and services stands in the way of innovation within the digital economy.”  It’s not just Wyden, from Washington Reps Hastings, McMorris-Rodgers, Reichert and Kilmer have signed onto the House version.  Representative Kurt Schrader of Oregon has also signed on to support the bill.  These guys get it.  Senator Wyden is right, mobile connectivity is no longer a luxury – it’s increasingly a primary resource that connects people to their families, their work, their businesses and a vast pool of information and resources.  The world is going mobile and the sooner policy makers (like these) understand and support it, the better off we’ll be.       

Categories Blog, Featured Story, Wireless Explosion | Tags: | Posted on July 22, 2013

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