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Google, Verizon, and Net Neutrality


Verizon Wireless and Google today announced a strategic partnership that will leverage the Verizon Wireless network and the Android open platform to deliver mobile applications, services and devices. Both companies view this agreement as an opportunity to offer consumers an array of products that combine the speed of the nation's largest and most reliable 3G network with the flexibility of the Android mobile platform.

Integral to this agreement is a commitment by the companies to devote substantial resources to accelerate delivery of leading-edge innovation that will put unique applications in the hands of consumers quickly. The two industry leaders will create, market and distribute products and services, with Verizon Wireless also contributing the breadth of its nationwide distribution channels. Consumers will be able to purchase products resulting from the collaboration in Verizon Wireless retail and online stores.

Verizon Wireless and Google plan to codevelop several Android-based devices that will be pre-loaded with innovative applications from both parties as well as third-party developers. The family of Android phones on the Verizon Wireless network will come from leading handset manufacturers.

"The nation's best wireless broadband network is a perfect complement to the innovation of Android-powered services and devices," said Lowell McAdam, chief executive officer of Verizon Wireless. "Together, we'll work to deliver a compelling new experience to our customers."

"The Android platform allows Verizon Wireless customers to experience faster and easier access to the web from any location," said Eric Schmidt, chairman and chief executive officer for Google. "Through this partnership, we hope to deliver greater innovation in the mobile space to consumers across the U.S."

The agreement will come to fruition within the next few weeks as Verizon Wireless introduces Android-based handsets.

In response to today’s announcement by Google and Verizon that the two companies had established a joint policy proposal for the open Internet, Free Press Political Adviser Joel Kelsey issued the following statement:

"Google and Verizon can try all they want to disguise this deal as a reasonable path forward, but the simple fact is this framework, if embraced by Congress and the Federal Communications Commission, would transform the free and open Internet into a closed platform like cable television. This is much worse than a business arrangement between two companies. It's a signed-sealed-and-delivered policy framework with giant loopholes that blesses the carving up of the Internet for a few deep-pocketed Internet companies and carriers.

"If codified, this arrangement will lead to toll booths on the information superhighway. It will lead to outright blocking of applications and content on increasingly popular wireless platforms. It would give companies like Verizon, Comcast and AT&T the right to decide which content will move fast and which should be slowed down. And it will destroy the open Internet as a platform for small business innovation and job creation, cementing companies', like Google's, dominant market power online.

“Still worse, this deal proposes to keep the FCC from making rules at all. Instead of an even playing field for everyone, it proposes taking up complaints on a case-by-case basis, or even leaving it up to third-party industry groups to decide what the rules should be. The only good news is that neither of these companies is actually in charge of writing the rules that govern the future of the Internet. That is supposed to be the job of our leaders in Washington.

"Congress and the FCC should reject Verizon and Google's plans to carve up the Internet for the private benefit of deep-pocketed special interests, and move forward with policies that preserve the open Internet for all. This begins with the FCC reasserting its authority over broadband to ensure it can protect the open Internet and promote universal access to affordable, world-class quality broadband.

“The Internet is one of our nation's most important resources, and policymakers everywhere should recognize that the future of our innovation economy is far too important to be decided by a backroom deal between industry giants."


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