Today leading economists Rob Shapiro and Kevin Hassett released a study analyzing the impact of the adoption of 4G mobile technologies on the U.S. economy. (The study is available in pdf here.) A comparison of wireless technology penetration rates to state-by-state employment data shows that the transition from 3G to 4G mobile technologies should create more than 231,000 jobs for every 10 percentage point gain in adoption rates within a year. This means that a 40 percent gain in 4G adoption would produce nearly 1 million new jobs. These results provide powerful evidence that our national job creation strategy should seek to accelerate the deployment of 4G infrastructure.
The study also demonstrates the critical role 4G mobile technologies will play in achieving other national goals related to health care, energy, e-commerce, and cloud-based innovation. The shift to 4G would:
• Accelerate mobile e-commerce, which grew from about $1.4 billion in 2009 to between $6 billion and $9 billion in 2011;
• Enhance savings from the wide use of electronic medical records created and accessed wirelessly, along with other “mHealth” applications;
• Save $10 billion by further reducing power outages in the nation’s electricity networks; and
• Enable the market for cloud-based services to reach $39 billion by 2016.
Mobile service providers are already investing billions of dollars to deploy 4G infrastructure. But they can’t achieve these goals on their own. Congress and the FCC must make available more spectrum for the United States to sustain its mobile advantage. Today’s evidence shows just how much the success of our economy depends on it.
To hear directly from the authors about the paper, come see them in person in Washington on Thursday, or participate in a live web video briefing/discussion later that afternoon. You can learn more about each presentation or RSVP here.