Verizon to FCC: restrictions on airwaves auction are unjust

Reuters

Verizon Communications Inc has urged U.S. regulators not to restrict how much it can buy in next year's auction of wireless spectrum, saying such a limit would subsidize the smallest national carriers and their foreign owners.

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler recently proposed rules for the complex sale of valuable airwaves scheduled for mid-2015. The rules would reserve part of the spectrum in each market for wireless carriers that do not already have dominant blocks of low-frequency airwaves there.

That would benefit the No. 3 and No. 4 carriers, Sprint Corp (Overland Park, KS, USA) and T-Mobile US Inc (Bellevue, WA, USA), by limiting the two biggest carriers, Verizon (New York City, NY, USA) and AT&T Inc (Dallas, TX, USA), which dominate the highly valued low-band spectrum.

The sale is considered one of the most complex undertakings by the FCC. It would first involve TV stations' giving up airwaves they exclusively use and the FCC then auctioning them off to wireless carriers. Congress has mandated that the FCC raise enough money to pay broadcasters for their lost spectrum and fund a new $7 billion public safety network.

Verizon on Monday pushed back against the proposed rules in meetings with Ajit Pai and Mike O'Rielly, the FCC's two Republican commissioners, who have also expressed concerns about the proposed restrictions, according to an FCC disclosure posted online on Thursday.

AT&T last month told Wheeler's staff that it may choose to sit out the auction if such rules are adopted, though it later told investors that outcome would not be ideal.

"Verizon stressed that it would be perverse and unjust for the commission to adopt auction rules that subsidize some large multinational companies at the expense of their competitors," Verizon said in Thursday's filing, referring to Sprint's Japanese parent, SoftBank Corp (Tokyo), and T-Mobile's German parent, Deutsche Telekom AG (Bonn, Germany).

"T-Mobile and Sprint are large corporations with established, well-financed corporate parents. They and their parent corporations are more than capable of paying substantial amounts to acquire spectrum in the incentive auction if they choose to do so," Verizon said.

Wheeler has repeatedly asserted that his goal is to ensure that non-dominant carriers in each market get some low-frequency spectrum.

His plan would reserve up to 30 megahertz of airwaves in each market for carriers that do not already have one-third of low-band spectrum there, whether that be Verizon, AT&T or a regional carrier. The reserve would kick in only after the auction reaches a particular trigger, which will be established in coming months.

The FCC is slated to vote on formally proposing the rules at its May 15 meeting.

(Reporting by Alina Selyukh, editing by Ros Krasny)

ArticleTools

Featured Big Data Reports

Market Opportunity: Big Data in the Internet of Things
Big Data and Analytics software and applications will play a crucial role in making IoT a success. The data generated through sensors embedded in various things/objects will generate massive amounts of unstructured (big) data on real-time basis that holds the promise for intelligence and insights for dramatically improved decision processes.

 

Structured and Unstructured (Big) Data in Telecom Analytics
This report provides the reader with a broad understanding of telecom data (structured and unstructured/big data) and related analytics. The report identifies market drivers and opportunities as well as forecasts for certain key growth areas such as deep packet inspection.

 

Telecom Carrier Big Data Operations, Applications, and Services
Telcos have a major advantage in that they have many sources of data but if they want to monetize that data and derive meaningful, actionable analytics it could be challenging due to the complexities of correlation, prediction, and the massive volumes of data from different sources.

 

Affordable Market Reports on Big Data, IoT, CDN & More!
Access the exclusive new series of market research reports brought to you through the partnership of Mind Commerce research and TelecomEngine.com.
Browse the latest titles

 

 

 

Featured Events & Partners

The Telecom Exchange (TEX)
Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Cipriani Wall Street, New York City

Designed to navigate enterprise and carrier network operators through all carrier hotels and colocation houses available in the US and globally.

Visit event website...