Friday, May 30, 2008

The FCC's Considers Another Spectrum Auction For Free Internet......Disruption Ahead

Will 2008 could go down as the "The Year of Spectrum"?

Earlier this year the FCC held the 700 MHz Auction.

Last week Google's Larry Page went to Washington to push for broadband using White Spaces.

Now the FCC is pushing another spectrum auction for "free Internet".

What are the ramifications for free broadband in the US?

Outside of the US Economy and the consumer, what companies stand to benefit and what companies should be altering their businesses?

This would be a huge boost for America broadband users, but could it be disastrous for mobile players?

How far are we from free mobile service? How big is this for VoIP players?
Who would provide the triangulation services? (gps, lbs)

From Yahoo FCC Mulls High-Speed Internet Plan

Federal regulators may require the winner of airwaves being auctioned off by the government to provide free wireless high-speed Internet service across a large swath of the country.

The Federal Communications Commission at its June 12 meeting will likely vote on an order setting terms of the spectrum auction that could include the free Internet service provision. A similar proposal was rejected last year.

The resulting network must reach 50 percent of the population four years after the winner gets a license and then 95 percent after 10 years.

"We believe this is a good idea and demonstrates the FCC's commitment to supporting initiatives that have a positive impact on the next phase of broadband innovation. This will give consumers greater choices to access the Internet," said Chelsea Fallon, a FCC spokeswoman, in a statement.

From Washington Post FCC's Next Two Spectrum Auctions

The FCC is working on two more proposals. One would be re-auctioning the D-Block, which failed to sell in the last auction, and requires the buyer to set aside a portion of the spectrum for public safety. The FCC is also considering selling a swath of airwaves that would require the buyer to provide a free nationwide wireless broadband network.

From WSJ FCC Weighs Free Internet Plan

The Federal Communications Commission is considering a plan that would require the winner of a planned airwaves auction to offer free wireless-Internet service to most Americans within the next few years.

Supporters of the plan say it could help widen competition in a market dominated by wireless carriers, such as AT&T Inc. and Verizon Wireless.

Wireless companies generally oppose the FCC giving away spectrum, mostly because they have spent billions of dollars scooping up airwaves to provide phone and next-generation wireless data services.

Earlier this year, wireless companies spent upward of $20 billion to buy airwaves that will be left vacant in 2009, when the U.S. transitions to digital-only television broadcasts.

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