FCC completes 3.5 GHz spectrum auction raising $4.5 bn

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has completed the 3.5 GHz spectrum auction (Auction 105) – raising $4.585 billion.
5G spectrum auction in Dutch
The completion of the 3.5 GHz spectrum auction will help wireless operators to improve 5G mobile coverage in the United States. The auction for selling 5G spectrum launched July 23 and ended on 25 August.

FCC will reveal the name of winners later. There were 271 eligible bidders including AT&T, Cox, Shenandoah Cable TV, USSC, and Windstream, among others. Bidders won 20,625 of 22,631, or more than 91.1 percent, of available licenses.

FCC will release a public notice in a few days providing detailed auction results, including the names of Auction 105 winning bidders. That information, as well as other information about Auction 105, will be available at: https://www.fcc.gov/auction/105.

FCC said bidding in the auction of 70 megahertz of Priority Access Licenses (PALs) in the 3550-3650 MHz band (Auction 105) concluded following round 76.

The auction of Priority Access Licenses in the 3550-3650 MHz band, which was designated as Auction 105, made available the greatest number of spectrum licenses ever in a single FCC auction, the telecom regulator said.

This 70 megahertz of licensed spectrum will further the deployment of 5G, as well as the Internet of Things (IoT) and other advanced spectrum-based services, said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai.

FCC will be making available 280 more megahertz of mid-band spectrum for 5G in the C-band auction beginning on December 8.

Once the FCC identifies the winners, “we’ll see where licensees have created larger market areas by looking at contiguous counties and spectrum blocks,” said Mark Gibson, director, business development, for CommScope.

“This will help determine the extent to which licensees are interested in CMA-like or nationwide service. New licensees who want to put their spectrum to use will start deploying CBSDs and claiming their protected coverage in their respective counties,” Mark Gibson said.

Sasha Javid, COO of BitPath and former top FCC auction official, suggests who bid what could be quite revealing, providing the answer to how much Verizon, AT&T and T-Mobile are willing to pay for spectrum blocks that require frequency coordination and strict power limits?