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FCC Splits Auction of Controversial Spectrum

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May 25, 2002, 12:37 AM   by (staff)

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has postponed the auction of spectrum licenses in the 747-762 MHz and 777-792 MHz bands (Upper 700 MHz band) until January 14, 2003. The FCC delayed the auction in order to provide additional time for Congress to consider legislation affecting that auction. The FCC stated that the auction of spectrum licenses in the 698-746 MHz band (Lower 700 MHz), will proceed as scheduled beginning on June 19, 2002. Both spectrum ranges are currently used by UHF television broadcasts in the 52-69 channel range, but are to be vacated in the move to digital broadcast television, scheduled to be complete by 2006. Wireless carriers would like to use the spectrum to build out better 3G networks, but uncertainty about the television broadcasters’ ability to vacate the spectrum in a timely manner has prompted some carriers and industry groups to request a delay of the auction(s).



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