The Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) has adopted additional rules, in a Third Report and Order (Order), for its Digital Opportunity Data Collection (DODC) to assist the Commission in the collection of precise and accurate broadband coverage maps. Specifically, the Commission has specified which providers are required to report their coverage data, that being any facilities-based provider, as defined in the Order. The new rules also require fixed broadband Internet access providers to report whether broadband services are offered to residential and/or business customers.
The Order also creates standards for collecting and verifying broadband deployment data. For instance, mobile service providers will be required to submit, on a case-by-case basis, either infrastructure information or on-the-ground test data in order to verify their submitted coverage data. Such providers will also have to submit heat maps showing signal levels for each active cell site for each 4G LTE and 5G propagation map they submit. Lastly, the Order establishes enforcement measures for the data collection requirements and sets a process for transitioning from the Form 477 data collection to the DODC process.