An anonymous reader writes "The FCC is butting heads with wireless phone companies over 'wiggle room' the government organization wishes to allow consumers. Along with the move to the auction system, the government is removing restrictions on pieces of the wireless spectrum, which will allow a freedom of choice not usually seen with wireless communication devices. 'In the past, when the F.C.C. auctioned spectrum for cellular service, it allowed the winners to determine the equipment and applications that would run on their networks. That created the current status quo, in which a vast majority of American consumers buy a handset from a wireless service provider. The open-access rules, which will apply to about one-third of the spectrum being sold at the auction, represent a significant departure from past practice. They require the winners to let consumers use any tested, safe and compatible device or application on its network. Entrepreneurs could sell handsets with capabilities that are unavailable -- or unavailable at affordable prices -- from current carriers.'"
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