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FCC Clears Path for mmWave 5G Incentive Auction

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Dec 12, 2018, 1:10 PM   by Eric M. Zeman   @zeman_e

The FCC today took measures that will lead to an auction for 5G spectrum in 2019. The agency adopted new rules to make a total of 3,400 MHz of mmWave spectrum available in the 37 GHz, 39 GHz, and 47 GHz bands. All three bands will be broken into 100 MHz blocks and licensed by partial economic areas. The auction will be an incentive auction for contiguous blocks of spectrum. Incentives will be given to those entities that choose to relinquish their spectrum holdings and make new licenses available. There will be two phases to the auction, a “clock phase” wherein bidders can bid on generic license blocks and an “assignment phase” in which clock phase winners can bid on specific frequencies.The FCC didn’t go as far as setting a date for the auction, but it often targets the November timeframe. This high-band spectrum is ideal for providing capacity.

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