US Regulator Sets $10 Billion Reserve Price on Radio Spectrum Auction
Published on: 21st May 2014
By: Ian Mansfield
The US telecoms regulator has set a USD10 billion reserve price on the radio spectrum it is planning to auction off later this year.
Technically, it is seeking US$10,066,326,600 for the paired spectrum bands (1755-1780/2155-2180 MHz licenses) in the AWS-3 auction.
The auction (dubbed Auction 97) has also been confirmed as starting on the 13th November.
The 65 megahertz of AWS-3 spectrum available (1,614 licenses) will be licensed on a geographic area basis. Of those, 880 will be by Economic Area (EA) and 734 will be Cellular Market Area (CMA).
The frequencies will be licensed in five and 10 MHz blocks, with licenses available for five, 10 and 20 MHz. The smaller blocks may also make it easier for smaller bidders to buy up lots.
That 65 will be the largest amount of spectrum auctioned since the FCC's 2008 auction of the 700 MHz spectrum.
The revenues from the auction are earmarked for the construction of a nationwide public safety broadband network for use by State and Federal agencies.
Next year, the regulator plans another auction that could raise double the amount, at around USD20 billion due to the spectrum being offered being more favourable to the mobile networks.