Federal regulators have unveiled an ambitious plan to bring high-speed Internet service to millions of Americans who can't get it today, while boosting delivery speeds and lowering prices for 200 million current subscribers.

The Federal Communications Commission's National Broadband Plan also aims to leverage broadband to transform nearly every aspect of U.S. society and industry, including health care, education and energy. The FCC will deliver the sweeping blueprint to Congress today.

It's "a 21st-century roadmap to spur economic growth and investment, create jobs, educate our children, protect our citizens and engage in our democracy," FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski says.

Parts of the plan, which could cost up to $20 billion, will likely face backlash from industry or in Congress. Providers fear new costs and regulations.

Genachowski says the USA ranks as low as 15th in the world in broadband adoption, threatening "America's global competitiveness."

About 95% of U.S. households have access to broadband, leaving 14 million largely rural Americans with no onramp. Yet just 65% of Americans have subscribed. That means about 86 million people don't have service because they can't afford it, lack the skills or for other reasons.

The plan aims to:

•Connect 100 million households to affordable, 100 megabits-per-second service in the next 10 years. Such speeds would permit high-definition videoconferencing and medical diagnostics.

The FCC wants to remove regulatory obstacles providers face to connect to poles, rooftops and rights-of-way and encourage them to open parts of their networks to competitors.

•Boost adoption from 65% to 90% through training in communities and other steps.

•Deliver broadband to residents in rural areas and low-income households. The FCC plans to shift up to $15.5 billion from the Universal Service Fund — which supports phone services for poor and rural customers — to broadband.

•Widen the reach of mobile broadband. Third-generation broadband is available in 60% of the nation. The FCC wants to auction 500 megahertz of new spectrum. To obtain the airwaves, it would coax TV broadcasters to give up current digital channels by charging leasing fees, for example.

•Create a $16 billion interoperable mobile broadband network for public safety agencies using revenue from the wireless auctions.

The FCC, the White House or Congress would have to implement the plan, some of which could be controversial.

National Association of Broadcasters spokesman Dennis Wharton frets that efforts to acquire spectrum could impose "onerous" new fees on broadcasters. And Josh Silver, head of advocacy group Free Press, expects cable and phone giants to fight moves to open their networks.