Category Archives: Spectrum

5G mmWave Spectrum: Was Straight Path Worth the Price?

This past week saw Verizon overtaking AT&T in bidding for Straight Path Communications, owner of 28 and 39 GHz ‘5G’ spectrum, closing the contest at $3.1 Billion, more than double AT&T’s initial bid of $1.25 Billion ($1.6 B transaction value). The acquisition is framed within the context of spectrum for 5G services. What makes this an interesting case… Read More »

600 MHz Incentive Auction: Beating Disappointment

Bidding on the 600 MHz ‘incentive band’ stopped at $19.63 billion. The assignment phase now in progress to decide on specific allotments.  Detailed results will be announced a few weeks after that concludes. Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile, Dish and Comcast are among the bidders with Sprint a notable absentee. It will be a few short years before this new… Read More »

5 Things You Need To Know About 5G.

The 5G picture is getting clearer by the day. While there is still a lot of fuzziness that will take take time to crystallize the broad outline for 5G is now more clear. Below, is a summary of some of our findings on 5G. Needless to say, 5G developments will have significant ramifications especially as the capital expenses… Read More »

Can Runaway Spectrum Prices Stimulate New Business Models?

Every once in a while a spectrum auction brings big and interesting surprises. The last example is the 900 MHz Thai auction concluded last week which raised close to THB152 billion ($4.2 billion) for the right to use two licenses of 2×10 MHz. This is over 6x the reserve price THB12.8 billion per license, and one of the most… Read More »

WRC-15: Win Some, Lose Some

WRC15 concluded with new spectrum assigned for mobile services: L-band:  1427-1518 MHz is now assigned for fixed and mobile services. The L-Band is used for mobile satellite services. Technical measures need to be developed for co-existence with mobile satellite in 1518-1559 MHz. The 1350 – 1400 MHz was also a target for IMT, but it did not get… Read More »

How Much is 700 MHz Spectrum Worth?

The 700 MHz auction in France closed last week raising a total of €2.8 billion ($3.17 billion). Orange and Free Mobile secured 2 block of 5 MHz duplex spectrum, while Bouygues and SFR secured one 5 MHz block each. The operators will have now to bid for the position of the allocation in the band: they got four choices,… Read More »

Time for a Comprehensive Strategy for License-Exempt Spectrum

Calls for regulators to release more unlicensed spectrum for Wi-Fi are getting louder: the 2.4 GHz band is heavily used and the 5 GHz band suffers from many restrictions that limit its applicability. LTE’s entry into unlicensed spectrum is further amplifying these calls and adding an acute sense of urgency. But what is required is more than additional… Read More »

700 MHz German Spectrum Auction Overview

The German 700 MHz auction concluded with a price tag of a billion Euro:

What to Shut Down First 2G or 3G?

Telenor Norway announced it will shut down 3G network in 2020; five years before 2G. This is yet another example of how operators in Europe are diverging from North American operators by opting to shut down 3G ahead of 2G. 3G is much less efficient in carrying data traffic than LTE which is twice better.  2G/GPRS is the… Read More »

2600 MHz Canada Spectrum Auction Overview

The spectrum auction concluded on May 12 raising over C$755 million (US$624 m). Telus was the biggest spender with over C$478 m to secure 1339m MHz-PoP. The blended cost per MHz-PoP for the overall spectrum auction is C$0.28 /MHz-PoP.

Canada AWS-3 Spectrum Result Summary

The AWS-3 auction in Canada has wrapped up raising a total of C$2.11 billion (US$ 1.68b) in a sealed-bid second-price format that was completed in a day. Of the 50 MHz auctioned, 30 MHz was set aside for challengers like Wind Mobile, Videotron and Eastlink who paid just over C$98 m in total, or on average C$0.105 (US$0.084)… Read More »

600 MHz Incentive Auction Key Facts

Now that the AWS-3 auction has concluded, not without controversy which will continue to reverberate for some time, attention will shift to the incentive auction planned by the FCC for next year. Being the first of its kind anywhere in the world, I thought it would be a good idea to summarize some of the inter-working of this… Read More »

AWS-3 Auction 97: Behind the Numbers

Auction 97 for the AWS-3 band made headline news as operators spent $44.9 billion on 65 MHz of spectrum – a huge sum of money. But what’s behind the headline story; what do the numbers tell? Here are some of observations:

AWS-3 Auction Closes on $44 Billion: Did They Cross The Bounds of The Rational?

It seems US wireless operators have crossed the bounds to the irrational in bidding on the AWS-3 spectrum. As I write this article, round 91 closed at over $43.74 billion for the 65 MHz of spectrum. That’s a gross average of $2.3/MHz PoP. To put this into perspective, the 90 MHz of AWS-1 spectrum in 2006 netted $13.7… Read More »

Should Licensed Spectrum be Allocated to IoT Applications?

A mix of connectivity technologies combines to enable the Internet of Things. These technologies can be complementary or competitive in nature. Determining which fits and which does not starts with the application use case and the user requirement. For most IoT applications there is no need for broadband connectivity. Rather, what is required is a reliable connectivity to… Read More »