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US: FCC facing most complex task yet to boost wireless competition

 |  October 24, 2013

The Federal Communications Commission is planning a wireless spectrum auction next year in what some are calling the most complex project ever tackled by the regulator.

The FCC is planning a so-called reverse spectrum auction, which would require television broadcasters to voluntarily relinquish their spectrum so the FCC could repackage and sell it to wireless companies.

The plan is intended to meet growing demand for mobile broadband.

According to reports, the plan is complicated, as regulators cannot predict which television broadcasters – or how many – will submit their spectrum.

Reports say Congress is most focused on the structure of the wireless market, and whether there is enough competition. For those who believe the market is healthy, the upcoming auction will optimize the use of spectrum and raise money to support FirstNet, the national public safety network.

But for others concerned about the level of competition in the wireless market, the auction provides an opportunity for smaller carriers to compete against the largest rivals like Verizon and AT&T.

Full content: Roll Call

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