Everyone Wants Some 700 MHz Spectrum
By Andrew M. Seybold
The federal government will be auctioning 60 MHz of prime beachfront property--the 700 MHz spectrum--between now and the end of January 2008, at least according to the mandate they have from Congress. Cyren Call, Frontline and others have their own ideas about how to carve up this spectrum and how to use it. Some want a portion of it designated as open access spectrum and still others want it chopped up into hundreds of licenses so both small and large companies can play at the auctions. And it should be no surprise that it is also being lusted after by the Internet companies including Microsoft, Cisco, Yahoo, Google and, yes, even Intel.
This 60 MHz of spectrum represents the best spectrum that has ever become available through the auction process. It requires fewer cell sites to cover an area, it penetrates tall buildings with a single bound, it will make the winners rich and, at the same time, provide a solution to the first responder community interoperability problems. All you have to do is bring up 700 MHz to a group of wireless industry people and you will hear a wide variety of answers, all of which end with, "We only have one chance to get this right, so let's make sure those who really need the spectrum can get it."
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Andrew Seybold is an authority on technology and trends shaping the world of wireless mobility. A respected analyst, consultant, commentator, author and active participant in industry trade organizations, his views have influenced strategies and shaped initiatives for telecom, mobile computing and wireless industry leaders worldwide. Check out his website at www.andrewseybold.com