The auction of the 1900 MHz PCS H Block officially ended Thursday afternoon, with total bids of $1.564 billion, exactly the reserve price. Although it is not yet official, Dish Network is likely going to be the winner of the airwaves.
The auction of the 1900 MHz PCS H Block, which has dragged on for longer than analysts thought it would, now appears to be entering its last days--and Dish Network is still likely going to be the winner of the airwaves.
The auction of the 1900 MHz PCS H Block is starting to wind down, and Dish Network still appears poised to walk away with the spectrum, according to a financial analyst. Based on current activity, the auction will likely end sometime in the next few days.
The auction of the 1900 MHz PCS H Block is one week old but it's already becoming apparent to analysts that Dish Network is set to capture the spectrum in short order, an outcome that many saw as inevitable. The question now is, if and when Dish wins control of the airwaves, what it might do with another 10 MHz chunk of spectrum.
The FCC is launching its first significant auction of wireless spectrum in six years Wednesday, with the auction of the 1900 MHz PCS H Block, in a sparsely populated sale in which Dish Network is the lead bidder for the airwaves.
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said the commission is moving the start of the 600 MHz broadcast TV spectrum incentive auctions to mid-2015 from a previously scheduled start of sometime in 2014 to make sure the agency gets the technology and policy correct. The decision could have major ramifications for how other spectrum auctions scheduled to take place before the incentive auctions proceed.
Dish Network has officially registered its intent to bid in the FCC's upcoming 1900 MHz PCS H Block spectrum auction--and it is likely to secure a significant amount of licenses since it is the only major company planning to participate in the auction. If Dish is successful in winning H Block licenses, the company would notably improve its already significant spectrum portfolio.
According to a new report from New Street Research analyst Jonathan Chaplin, Charlie Ergen's Dish Network could acquire the most spectrum of any company--around 60 MHz--over the course of the next year or so. If Dish is indeed successful in acquiring the spectrum, the company would own a spectrum war chest of as much as 100 MHz--positioning the company as a potentially major player in the wireless market.
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler said Thursday the 1900 MHz PCS H block auction will go forward on Jan. 22, as scheduled, despite Sprint and T-Mobile US indicating they will not participate.
In the span of 48 hours this week executives from both Sprint and T-Mobile US declared that their companies will not participate in the Jan. 22 auction of the 1900 MHz PCS H Block, leaving Dish Network the most likely winner of the spectrum. Analysts said the two carriers are avoiding the H Block auction because they want to focus on their existing spectrum holdings and wait for other upcoming auctions, as well as a avoid complications with Dish and its chairman, Charlie Ergen.