In summer 2011, news reports claimed that Verizon Wireless had asked Google to disable tethering applications in Google’s mobile application store, the Android Market. Tethering applications allow users to use laptops or other devices over their mobile Internet connection by attaching them to their smart phones. In early June 2011, Free Press filed a complaint with the FCC alleging that this behavior violates the openness conditions that govern the use of the part of the 700 MHz spectrum over which Verizon Wireless’s LTE network operates. The FCC designated the proceeding as a restricted proceeding under its ex parte rules, which meant that the public would not be invited to comment on the issues raised by Free Press’s complaint.
This letter asked the FCC to open up the proceeding for public comment. The FCC later cited the letter in its decision to do so.