Monday, March 24, 2008
So, who came out a winner in the recent FCC auction of the spectrum? Apparently, the usual suspects--AT&T and Verizon Wireless, which were the high bidders ($16 billion of the total $19 billion bid). Verizon Wireless took nearly every license available in the "C" block--the section in which Google was expected to snap up some licenses but ultimately did not; Google went home a bridesmaid. However, its participation did trigger the "open access" requirements (based on bidding hitting a minimum reserve). Frontier Wireless, owned by EchoStar, bid about 3/4 of a billion for a bunch of licenses. Finally, no bidder offered enough toward that significant "D" block separated out for an emergency communications network--minimum price was $1.3 billion. The FCC says it will investigate why that part of the auction failed to attract enough interest.