Verizon, T-Mobile Submit Joint 600MHz Band Plan
Verizon Wireless and T-Mobile have together submitted a proposal to the Federal Communications Commission concerning the upcoming 600MHz auction. Much of the spectrum in the 600MHz band currently belongs to television stations. The FCC is offering those stations cash to give up their 6MHz slices of spectrum in a reverse incentive auction. Verizon and T-Mobile laid out four principles they believe the FCC should meet as it settles on the rules regarding the auction. The most significant aspect of the companies' plan calls for a single band to cover the 35x35MHz pairing. By creating a single Band Class, the two hope to avoid some of the issues that have beset the 700MHz spectrum and the varied Band Classes used by different carriers around the country. "This will enable carriers to deploy wireless services quickly and will drive manufacturers to develop devices that work on all carrier networks and for all customers," said Verizon and T-Mobile. The carriers also want to maximize the amount of spectrum made available, allow for quick and inexpensive development of devices and networking equipment, and allocate unpaired spectrum for downlink operations. The FCC is still writing the rules for the auction, and there are still plenty of unknowns, including just how many television stations will participate and give up their spectrum.
Verizon Might Skip 600MHz Incentive Auction
Verizon Wireless said it is comfortable with its spectrum holdings at the moment and may not bid in next year's auction for 600MHz airwaves. Verizon is only using 40% of its licensed spectrum for LTE, which gives it plenty of room to add capacity.
FCC Finalizes 30MHz Reserve for 600MHz Auction
The FCC today formally rejected T-Mobile's bid to set aside more low-band spectrum for smaller carriers in next year's 600MHz auction. T-Mobile wanted to see a total of 40MHz of the valuable low-band airwaves set aside for carriers other than AT&T and Verizon Wireless.
T-Mobile Implores FCC to Set Aside More Low-Band Spectrum
T-Mobile CTO Neville Ray filed a letter with the FCC asking it to raise the amount of spectrum set aside for competitive carriers in the forthcoming 600MHz reverse auction. The FCC has already agreed to reserve 30MHz of spectrum for carriers other than AT&T and Verizon.
Incentive Auction Fails to Attract Big Spenders
The FCC's 600MHz incentive auction is proceeding slowly and may need to be reset. After 27 rounds of bidding, the total amount bid has reached only $23 billion, far short of the $88.4 billion clearing cost set during the reverse part of the auction earlier this year.
FCC Likely to Side with AT&T and Verizon in Spectrum Fight
The FCC is close to making a final decision regarding how much spectrum to set aside for smaller carriers in next year's 600MHz auction and T-Mobile isn't going to be happy. The FCC has already set aside 30MHz of the airwaves in question for smaller carriers, thereby limiting how much spectrum AT&T and Verizon — the nation's two largest carriers — can acquire.
How many TV stations will give up their spectrum?