R Street Institute applauds FCC for helping new, innovative devices reach market faster

Last week, Federal Communications Commission (FCC) Acting Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel announced a report and order that would make it easier for device manufacturers to import and sell radiofrequency devices prior to authorization by the FCC.

“The changes to the device importation and marketing rules will spur competition and significantly benefit consumers who are willing to pay for the newest and latest technology,” said Jeffrey Westling, resident fellow on the R Street Institute’s Technology & Innovation Policy team. “By relaxing these regulations, the FCC will make it easier for start-ups and innovators to raise capital for innovative devices that may shake up the technology landscape as we know it.”

While initially designed to prevent incidents of harmful radio service interference, the restrictions on pre-authorization device importation and marketing now mainly serve as a barrier to competition, limiting the ability of manufacturers to get devices into consumer hands and gauge interest in a new, innovative product. Additionally, the rules limit manufacturers’ ability to utilize conditional sales mechanisms, like Kickstarter or Indiegogo.

R Street applauds the Chairwoman, Commissioners and all the FCC staff for their efforts to get this item to a vote.