The FCC is currently looking at ways to open up more airwaves so that mobile providers will be able to increase the availability of wireless broadband services. The reasoning for this is because the FCC Chairman, Julius Genachowski , has warned that the US does not have enough spectrum set aside for mobile broadband.
The idea is to take back some of the spectrum currently held by television stations and auction it off to mobile providers (much like it recently did with the analog frequencies). The plan, while not finalized, does make one extreme suggestion that some users may be forced to switch to a paid for services if parts of the spectrum are taken back by the government.
"Such an approach would cost about $12 billion in payments to broadcasters and about $9 billion to 'migrate all households that rely on over-the-air broadcasts to subscription services,' the study found."
The details of the plan are not expected until February but at this point nothing is off the table. The FCC is looking to expand mobile broadband services and is willing to do what it takes to make sure that it happens.