LIVE FROM MWC LAS VEGAS 2022: Meredith Attwell Baker, CEO and president of CTIA (pictured), commended the mobile industry for keeping smartphone prices and mobile plans stable in the face of record inflation, but urged US policy makers to open up more spectrum so the industry could continue to build on the current 5G platform.

Baker said the mobile industry bucked the trend at a time when the country was facing seven per cent to nine per cent inflation rates, which actually masked double digit spikes in goods from electricity to gas, cars and groceries.

“The outliers clearly jump out to me. Mobile phone plans and smartphones. I’m so proud that we are all keeping Americans connected and keeping prices under control. It’s about being consumer focused,” she said.

The CTIA boss pointed out that the industry actually had a track record of providing more for less, with prices cut in half over the past 10 years while data use and speeds rocketed.

However, this was only possible with the right policy, and “it is why policy matters”.

To that end, she urged authorities to open up more spectrum, particularly in the mid-band and licenses for mid-band in large continuous blocks.

“More spectrum is critical for us to continue to expand on this 5G platform and we know that spectrum is a team effort. We need congress to authorise auction authority and direct specific future options. We need the CTIA and FCC empowered to make these options possible.”

Adding to her message, she said such agencies should be speaking to the government with one voice, while there also needed to be better balance between commercial government, licenced and unlicensed spectrum.