FCC Sets Rules for AWS-H Block Spectrum Auction
Updated: Clarified that the Middle Class act itself isn't new.
The Federal Communications Commission today officially filed a proposal to auction off a 10Mhz slice of spectrum known as the AWS-H block. This block of spectrum adjoins the PCS band and is being freed up in part to help make more wireless broadband available to Americans. The H block falls in the 1915-1920MHz (uplink) and 1995-2000MHz (downlink) bands. It resides next to the PCS G block, which is used to Sprint. Officially, this notice of proposed rule making is a "first step in implementing" the Middle Class Tax Relief and Job Creation Act, which was passed earlier this year. Winners of the spectrum auction will need to offer cellular service to 40% of the coverage area within four years, and 70% within 10 years. Licensees will be allowed to segregate and license the spectrum on their own, but will have to work with Sprint to ensure there is no interference with Sprint's neighboring network. The FCC hopes to hold the auction next year.
AWS-3 Spectrum Auction Over, Bids Total $44.89 Billion
The FCC today said Auction 97, which covered blocks of spectrum in the AWS-3 band, is now over. It received a final bid today for the 1695-1710MHz unpaired spectrum band just a day after it closed bids for the G, H, I, and J paired spectrum blocks.
Sprint to Sit Out AWS-3 Auction
Sprint today confirmed that it will skip an upcoming spectrum auction. "Sprint has decided not to participate in the FCC's AWS-3 auction, but will continue to evaluate the opportunities presented by the upcoming 600MHz incentive auction," said Sprint spokesman Jeffrey Silva to Bloomberg.
3GPP Approves Band 66 for AWS Support
Dish Networks today said the 3GPP has approved the designation of Band 66, which encompasses a significant swath of AWS spectrum owned by Dish. Specifically, Band 66 pairs 70 MHz of uplink spectrum with 90 MHz of downlink spectrum in the AWS-1, AWS-3, and AWS-4 bands.
FCC Hands Out More AWS-3 Licenses to Auction Winners
The FCC has delivered more licenses to winners of the AWS-3 spectrum auction, which concluded earlier this year. The bulk of licenses granted this week were given to Orion Wireless LLC and Geneseo Communications Services, and cover areas of Illinois, Iowa, Maine, Minnesota, Missouri, North Carolina, Vermont, Virginia, and Wisconsin.