FCC Teeing Up Spectrum Item for September: Sources


According to various sources inside and outside the agency, FCC chairman Julius Genachowski will include a proposal on commission incentive auctions at the commission's September meeting.

Those are the auctions that will combine a reverse auction to compensate broadcasters for giving up spectrum -- lowest bidder wins -- with an auction of that reclaimed spectrum to the highest bidder, presumably wireless companies desperately seeking, or at least talking about desperately needing, more bandwidth.

The Obama administration has made finding more wireless broadband spectrum a national priority, which will also include freeing up more from federal users.

Broadcasters have said they need more info from the FCC on just how the auctions will be structured before they can decide whether and how much spectrum to give up, if any.

Among the issues is how broadcasters will be repacked into smaller spectrum real estate to free up blocks of spectrum or wireless use. Some broadcaster have argued that they could provide some relief for congested wireless networks without having to get out of the business by using their "one-to-many" model to offload wireless traffic at peak periods.