Late to the Party

Posted by: Jim Cicconi on February 3, 2011 at 4:33 pm

In a statement yesterday, NAB raised points they thought it important to note.  We think it’s also important to note that in the last four years alone, AT&T paid more than $10 billion simply for the rights to spectrum for our LTE wireless build.  This amount had to be paid before we could even begin spending the billions also required for the actual build out of LTE.

This can be contrasted with the broadcast spectrum at issue here, for which the broadcasters paid nothing, and which, when used at all, serves only a sliver of the population with services that, at best, duplicate robust services widely available elsewhere.  In short, if NAB is truly committed to identifying those “sitting” on unused or underused spectrum, they can start by looking in the mirror.

As for the NAB’s call for a government inventory of spectrum, this is another party to which they’re late.  AT&T and the entire wireless industry were early supporters of spectrum inventory legislation.  Government scrutiny of spectrum use is already underway, and government agencies have identified the broadcasters’ spectrum as underutilized.  No wireless company fears a careful examination of spectrum usage.  Indeed, the only entity reacting in an over-stressed way at the prospect of such scrutiny is NAB.

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Into Thin Air

Posted by: Carl Povelites on February 3, 2011 at 10:18 am

Like a climb up Mount Everest, finding new spectrum allocations for commercial wireless broadband use is extremely challenging. Those who have spectrum want to keep it, and the low hanging fruit has already been allocated…base camp has been reached.

The President, Congress and the FCC have all made it clear that additional spectrum is necessary to meet consumers’ increasing wireless broadband needs.  Indeed, growth in data is exploding, with traffic nearly tripling in 2010.  While carriers continue to invest heavily to add capacity, new spectrum is critical to reaping the full benefits of wireless broadband.

Earlier this week, the NTIA provided much needed support by announcing that it will conduct a detailed analysis of the 1755-1850 MHz band as its next step in evaluating government spectrum holdings for potential repurposing for commercial broadband use.  

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Getting Real About Spectrum

Posted by: Joan Marsh on February 1, 2011 at 5:37 pm

In a town that rarely sees agreement, there is now broad consensus regarding U.S. wireless broadband demand trends and the need to ensure that America keeps pace with the global wireless revolution.  And almost everyone agrees that the key component to meeting exploding consumer demand for wireless data services is more spectrum.  Almost everyone, that is, except NAB.  In an astonishing display of denial and false accusation, NAB circulated a letter this week accusing wireless carriers of being spectrum hoarders.


The wireless industry collectively shares about 425 MHz of mobile wireless spectrum used to serve over 292 million customers, and that number is growing.  The broadcast industry, by contrast, currently uses roughly half that to serve only 10 million over-the-air households, and that number is shrinking.  The wireless industry is currently racing to build the 4th generation of wireless networks (the third voluntary digital transition), investing billions of dollars and leading the world in wireless innovation and LTE deployment.   The broadcasters, by contrast, continue to rely on the same inefficient big stick distribution model that went digital via Congressional mandate in 2009, but otherwise hasn’t changed that much since color television was first introduced in 1953. 

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Privacy in a Mobilized World

Posted by: Bob Quinn on January 28, 2011 at 6:10 pm

It’s National Data Privacy Day and what better way to celebrate than to look at the progress on privacy made yesterday by our friends at GSMA – the association representing the worldwide mobile communications industry.  We have been pleased to work with the GSMA folks and other industry members to develop a set of universal Privacy Principles as part of GSMA’s Mobile Privacy Initiative.

These principles are not designed to supplant existing law, but rather to cultivate the orderly evolution of privacy frameworks across the vast array of governing bodies that have a legitimate interest in protecting the privacy of users around the globe.  The principles – which you can read in their entirety here – embody much of what we at AT&T have long believed in and practiced about privacy by design.

They stress the importance of openness, transparency and notice; define appropriate uses of personal information; and emphasize user control and choice.  They prescribe respect for user rights, security of personal information, and education of users, especially children.  We’re pleased to be a part of this Mobile Privacy Initiative and we support its goal of serving as the start of a process that will seek to shape the way privacy is advanced, managed and protected across the emerging mobile eco-system.   

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Raising Our Game in Cyberspace

Posted by: AT&T Blog Team on January 28, 2011 at 2:48 pm

Last week, AT&T’s Senior Vice President and Chief Security Officer Ed Amoroso delivered a lively keynote on cybersecurity at the State of the Net Conference in Washington, D.C.  If you weren’t able to attend in person, check out these video clips from his speech.

Are we all a security risk? Here’s Ed addressing how we all play a role in cybersecurity and why we need to raise our game as we battle cyber attacks.

Here, Ed addresses the importance of data collection in identifying what’s dangerous and why this space should constantly be evolving.

Are we too interconnected? Perhaps. Hear what Ed has to say on the benefits of intentionally designing networks that are NOT interoperable.

Are patches really effective? Hear why Ed says we have to raise the level beyond just security patching to throw off attackers.

It’s not about evolution but revolution.  Ed calls on all stakeholders to adopt a mindset of vast, dramatic and rapid change.

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