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free103point9 Newsroom has moved to of March 18, 2010 A blog for radio artists with transmission art news, open calls, microradio news, and discussion of issues about radio art, creative use of radio, and radio technologies. free103point9 announcements are also included here.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

700MHz: $6.1B & counting

From Daily Wireless:
The FCC’s 700 MHz spectrum auction saw a pair of bidding rounds that brought the total potential winning bids climb to just over $4.4 billion, after round six, and $6.1 billion after round eight. Highlights included continued interest in the regional grouping of C-Block licenses, a lack of new bids for the floundering national commercial-public safety D-Block license and the first withdrawal from the proceedings.

The auction closed Monday with $6.1 billion in Provisional Winning Bids. The 50-state, eight-license C band garnered $2.9 billion. The package of eight licenses remained the crown jewel of the event, says RCR wireless News, with one new bid during the earlier round five bid pushing the bidding to $2.15 billion.

The $2.9 billion for the “C Block” is more than half-way to the $4.6 billion reserve price that would trigger the open-access provision of the licenses. Google was a proponent of the open-access provision, and said it would bid at least that amount for the C Block.

“Our interpretation of the C Block activity suggests that there are only two bidders, most likely Google and Verizon Wireless, and we are a skeptical that either would move over to the D Block,” said analyst firm Stifel Nicolaus in a research note after round five. “It is also possible that there is only a single bidder for the C Block, increasing its bid each round, perhaps Google to trigger the reserve.”

The D band, which is allocated for public safety services, is lagging far behind with only $472 million bid so far. The reserve set by the FCC is $1.3 billion. A total of 62 MHz will be auctioned; 30 Mhz in the Lower 700MHz band, 32 Mhz in the Upper 700MHz band. RCR News and Blog Runner have more.

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