President Obama wants everyone in the United States to have access to high speed, affordable Internet -- even in rural areas of the country.
Speaking this afternoon in Cedar Falls, Iowa, the president is expected to discuss initiatives that will introduce more competition and incentives to build out the infrastructure in rural areas.
Obama is expected to highlight the achievements of several rural areas that have taken on community broadband projects that have leveraged public- and private-sector investments to bring high-speed connectivity to places that otherwise may not be served.
Spurring investment in other rural areas, the White House said new grant and loan opportunities from the Department of Agriculture would be made available for community broadband projects.
An estimated one in five American households don't have access to high-speed Internet, according to a White House report. The Federal Communications Commission defines high-speed Internet as connections able to transmit 25 MB per second or faster.
For the hundreds of millions of Americans who have high-speed Internet but may be limited in choice, the announcement also has implications.
The White House said today the Obama Administration will file a letter with the FCC calling for competition-stifling laws in 19 states to be overturned.
President Obama has been pushing cyber security and Internet policies this week ahead of his State of the Union address, which is expected to focus on the topics.