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The FCC called AT&T's bluff on the upcoming spectrum auction
Several weeks ago, this site reported on AT&T’s threat to stay out of the upcoming spectrum auction due to the FCC wanting to stop companies with the deepest wallets, like AT&T and Verizon, from hoarding all available spectrum in the upcoming auction. The rules are designed to make it easier for Sprint, T-Mobile and other smaller carriers to scoop up prime airwaves licenses for their LTE networks. Wireless companies covet the spectrum because they allow signals to penetrate buildings and travel long distances.
Earlier this week, the FCC called AT&T’s bluff and essentially dared them to stay out of the most important wireless spectrum auction in years. Well, it only took several weeks for AT&T to admit that the FCC did in fact call their bluff and that they would be participating in the upcoming auction.
In a letter, AT&T released a statement claiming “our desire to participate in this auction and our hope for a successful auction is unchanged.”
Basically, AT&T never planned on sitting out the upcoming auction. The fact that someone at AT&T thought that threatening to sit out this auction was a good idea on any level is a story for another day about AT&T’s incompetent leadership.
The FCC also plans to impose a six-year restriction to prevent companies from flipping those licenses to companies that don’t bid in the auction.