FCC Changes Tune on Broadcast Spectrum Grab
Phil Bellaria, the director of scenario planning for the Federal Communication Commission's broadband task force, recently said that the agency has shelved the idea of forcing television broadcasters to turn over spectrum for wireless broadband purposes. The idea had been considered, but not seriously, he indicated. "The reality is that we are not trying to take spectrum from any individual broadcaster unless that broadcaster chooses to do it," Bellaria said in an interview. "Where we have landed is a scenario that establishes a voluntary marketplace mechanism so that broadcast TV stations have a choice in how they want to use their spectrum. That choice could include retaining all of it and continue to broadcast in HD with broadcast and mobile; relinquishing some of it, because there are many stations not using all of the bandwidth available to it; or in some cases stations making the decision to relinquish all of their spectrum."
Google Home's Broadcast Feature Goes Live
Google today enabled the broadcast feature on Google Home devices in English in the U.S., U.K., Australia, and Canada. Now, people with Google Home devices in their house can broadcast announcements or statements from their phone-based Google Assistant to their Home device.
FCC Says Incentive Auction Reaches End Point
The FCC today said the close of the fourth stage will mark the end of bidding in the auction for 600 MHz airwaves. The auction has been in progress since last May and worked its way through several stages.
FCC Weighing Changes to 2.5 GHz Band for 5G
The FCC today said it is considering new rules for the Educational Broadband Service (EBS) spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band. The FCC says much of this spectrum is unused across the U.S., particularly in rural areas.
FCC's Incentive Auction Starts Tonight
The FCC said its incentive auction for 600 MHz airwaves officially gets under way at 6p.m. this evening, when broadcasters will need to commit to participating.
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