FCC to vote on AWS-3, may table D-block reauction

The FCC will consider a Dec. 18 vote on the AWS-3 auction, which stipulates a nationwide wireless broadband network that offers a portion of service for free and filters out pornography. Chairman Kevin Martin said part of the plan considered would be to make that spectrum available for unlicensed use if the winner bidder fails to meet certain buildout deadlines.

"I think it's important for the commission to try to move forward to make maximum use of spectrum and provide an opportunity for additional broadband service," Martin was quoted as saying in RCR News.

Martin has for some time pushed for a  nationwide license in the 2155-2180 MHz band that would require the winning bidder to open up 25 percent of its network for free broadband access. T-Mobile, which owns a substantial number of licenses in the adjacent AWS-1, opposes the FCC's plan over interference concerns.

Meanwhile, it appears rules for the 700 MHz D-block reauction won't be considered during the Dec. 18 meeting, according to a report in Urgent Communications. In September, the FCC adopted a notice of proposed rulemaking concerning the D-block auction, but the public-safety community and commercial operator community appear to be divisive on the issue.

On Sept. 25, the FCC adopted a notice of proposed rulemaking addressing the D block, but a subsequent comment period revealed increasing divisiveness within the public-safety and commercial camps that eventually would need to reach an agreement to make the public-private partnership model work.

For more:
- read RCR News
- check out Urgent Communications

Related articles:
T-Mobile fires back at M2Z ahead of AWS-3 auction
FCC Chairman looking to vote on D-block, AWS-3 auctions next month

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