If you ask any salesman at the wireless stores and kiosks at the mall how fast their company’s network is, you’ll likely get some variation on, “Oh, it’s REALLY fast”, which doesn’t ultimately help you all that much. The company’s advertisements aren’t much better, each boasting about speed without providing much in the way of quantification.

The FCC is going to do something about that. The Commission will hold a meeting on September 21st to begin to develop a program for monitoring mobile network speeds. The FCC has been doing that with broadband networks for some time. 

All Things D quotes FCC Chair Julius Genachowski:

“We know from experience: Transparency on broadband speeds drives improvement in broadband speeds. Our new mobile broadband measurement initiative extends the program to smartphones and other wireless devices. It will empower consumers and encourage improvements in mobile networks and programs, benefiting millions of Americans.”

It will be interesting to see if the Verizons and AT&Ts of the world embrace this testing or if they lobby against anything that could put their claims at risk of being defied by reality.

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Follow John Moe at @johnmoe