FCCs Pai is planning to tee up 2.5 GHz auction for 5G

On Tuesday, FCC chairman Ajit Pai presented plans to open access to the unused 2.5 GHz spectrum, with a draft order that would eliminate the current educational needs of the EBS section band and tee up an auction to use mid-range. band airwaves for 5G.

The item is slated for public release Wednesday and will vote for FCC's July 10 open meeting

The focus of the order is 114 megahertz of spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band currently reserved for Educational Broadband Service (EBS) .


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In a blog post, Pai said that the order will update an outdated framework that was "developed in those days when education television was the only use provided for this spectrum."

Pai indicated that the new framework condition that eliminates existing requirements for qualification and use and leasing constraints will give established users more flexibility in how to use the spectrum. For example, trainers who have licenses may choose to use the range of enhanced services or decide to transfer licenses to another entity and invest funds in their community.

The proposal also provides a local priority archive window for rural tribal nations to access the mid-range spectrum for mobile wireless service. Following the priority window, the FCC will conduct a residual "white space" auction of the unused 2.5 GHz spectrum, which currently covers half of the geographic United States.

Exact timing for tribal priority window is not determined, but senior FCC officials suggested it could take place parallel to the next millimeter wave spectrum auction scheduled to start on December 1[ads1]0.

Sprint holds a large amount of 2.5 GHz spectrum through leases, and FCC officials noted that the order would not affect any private contracts but give existing licensees greater flexibility.

RELATED: Editor's Corner-Will the value of Sprint's 2.5 GHz spectrum tax amount finally be realized?

The movement to release more mid-range spectrum is part of the FCC's ongoing efforts to promote and accelerate 5G distributions in the United States At the beginning of June, FCC released winners of the agency's first two high-band millimeter wave spectrum auctions, which overall increased more than 2 , $ 7 billion in profits.

Recently, nutritional attention has shifted to the need for additional mid-band spectrum, as airwaves propagation characteristics allow for further range and wider coverage needed for nationwide 5G.

Other possibilities for the mid-band spectrum include CBRS 3.5 GHz bands, which have had great industrial interest and are approaching first commercial distributions.

The FCC also considers proposals for access to spectrum in C-band, a topic that has raised significant debate over the past year.

The C-Band Alliance, consisting of four satellite operators, proposed a private auction frame for 3.7-4.2 GHz bands, which were faced with opposition from groups including the Open Technology Institute.

This week, Verizon urged CEO Hans Vestberg FCC to make the underutilized spectrum in the C band available to operators for next generation services.

"Rapid access to the mid-band spectrum is now critical to achieving the full promise of 5G, including more widespread 5G distribution and the full range of advanced capabilities that are wrongly possible at 5G," Vestberg said.

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