FCC Chair Greenlights Dish's Mobile Network Plans
Federal Communications Commission chairman Julius Genachowski has proposed that the agency allow Dish Network to build a new wireless network to provide cellular services in the U.S. Dish has been seeking approval for its plan for some time. "If approved, these actions will promote competition, investment and innovation, and advance commission efforts to unleash spectrum for mobile broadband to help meet skyrocketing consumer demand, while unlocking billions of dollars of value to the public," FCC spokesman Neil Grace said. The FCC has, however, placed several conditions on the proposal that may hobble Dish's effectiveness at providing competitive service. First, a new spectrum auction will be required, and some of the airwaves auctioned off will have to be used to build a dedicated first-responder network. Second, the FCC is requiring that Dish ramp down its power levels so that it doesn't interfere with neighboring spectrum owned by Sprint. "Telling us to lower our power levels cripples our ability to enter the business," said Dish Chairman Charlie Ergen to the Washington Post. "We want to enter the wireless business. We have $6 billion more we want to spend on building out this business. But the FCC could make it extremely risky for us." The full FCC is expected to vote on the proposal before the end of the year.
FCC Commish Calls to Question Dish's Auction Discounts
FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai is objecting to Dish Networks' claim on more than $3 billion in discounts in the recently closed AWS-3 spectrum auction. Dish did not bid directly on any spectrum.
Dish Says It Will Bid On 600MHz Spectrum
Dish Networks has told the FCC it intends to "meaningfully participate" in the reverse auction for 600MHz airwaves scheduled for next year. "The incentive auction offers opportunities for competitive providers and new entrants to bid on and win much-needed lowband spectrum, which will facilitate the deployment of mobile broadband services," said Dish Senior Vice President Jeffrey Blum in the filing with the agency.
Verizon Annoyed By Dish's AWS-3 Bidding Tactics
Like AT&T, Verizon Wireless is upset with the tactics used by Dish Networks in the recent AWS-3 spectrum auction. It accused the firm of artificially raising prices by creating perceived demand where in fact there was none.
FCC Denies Dish $3.3 Billion in Auction Discounts
The FCC has officially and unanimously rejected Dish Network's $3.3 billion in AWS-3 spectrum auction discounts. Dish used three smaller companies, in which it owned an 85% stake each, to place bids on its behalf.