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. Dish says Band 66 is the first asymmetric paired band, which has greater downlink capacity than uplink capacity. Beyond the adoption of Band 66, the 3GPP also said it will initiate a Work Item for a new band that encompasses more AWS-4 and H Block spectrum, also owned by Dish. Dish Networks has participated in a number of spectrum auctions and has amassed a lot of licenses that are going unused. The company won big in the AWS-3 auction, held earlier this year. Today's news puts Dish closer to potentially launching wireless service of its own. "The standardization of Band 66 clears the path for Dish's upper AWS-4 spectrum to be included in the network and device ecosystem for both operators and consumers," said Dish in a statement.
LG V20: First Phone To Support Band 66
FCC documents indicate that the LG V20 variants for Verizon, AT&T, and T-Mobile will be the first phones to support LTE in the new band 66. Band 66 includes the AWS-1, AWS-3, and AWS-4 frequencies.
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.
Dish's Designated Entities Give Up 197 Spectrum Licenses
Northstar Wireless and SNR Wireless LicenseCo surrendered 197 AWS-3 spectrum licenses and paid a $413 million fine to the FCC for defaulting on their $3.3 billion payment. Dish Networks participated in this year's auction through Northstar and SNR.
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.