Last Friday, FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski weighed in on the appropriate spectrum policy for the country and got it absolutely correct.  The Chairman made clear he still favors clearing spectrum for auction, where appropriate, while we also explore new sharing ideas that have been developed.   He correctly noted that it’s not “an either/or choice” – we will likely need to rely on both models to unlock the full value of our nation’s scarce spectrum resources. 

We agree and support the FCC’s direction on spectrum policy.  The Commission has long led the way in acknowledging the spectrum challenges our nation faces.  The National Broadband Plan was the first major policy document to recognize the need to allocate significant new bands for commercial use – and the dire consequences if its goal of an additional 500 MHz of spectrum wasn’t met.  The FCC has also demonstrated the will to address barriers to efficient spectrum use, as evidenced in its ongoing efforts to rationalize for mobile broadband use the MSS S-band and the currently under-utilized WCS band.  

Most recently, the Commission held a major technical forum dedicated exclusively to effective band design, tackling issues such as the role of new LTE advanced technologies in spectrum banding design and how band designs should address questions around duplex gaps, block sizes and asymmetrical load factors.  Some of the industry’s best engineers gathered to exchange ideas and engage in a productive discussion. 

These events, together with recent comments, demonstrate a thoughtful and effective approach to spectrum policy.  We look forward to continuing to work with the FCC on realizing the full value of our nation’s spectrum resources.

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