Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Report to 110th Congress - Spectrum Management and the 700 MHz Auction

The Open CRS Network has released a report to members of the 110th Congress describing the FCC's spectrum auction process and key policy issues to be considered in the up-coming 700 MHz auction. It's an interesting read, particularly for anyone concerned with wireless spectrum matters.

According to the report, "The FCC has concluded that auctioning of spectrum licenses has contributed to the rapid deployment of new wireless technologies, increased competition in the marketplace, and encouraged participation by small businesses. However, many have questioned whether auction policy should be supplemented more aggressively with other market-driven solutions, and whether the existing auction process and administration can be improved."

The report also says that "Spectrum management is an exercise in reconciling divergent interests. Over time, developments in technology may significantly increase the amount of usable spectrum and consequently the ease with which a policy of equitable allocation and use can be crafted. For the immediate future, Congress may choose to debate and act on questions such as
reforming spectrum management and allocation mechanisms. Some observers argue that a fully-developed policy should take into account issues such as international competitiveness, the communications needs of public safety agencies and the military, the role of wireless technology in economic growth, and the encouragement of new technologies that make spectrum use more efficient and more beneficial to society as a whole. The stated objective of many policy reformers is a coherent national policy (FYI - such a policy DOES NOT CURRENTLY EXIST - NR) that provides the proper balance for existing applications while at the same time providing opportunities for future growth and development."

The report ends by stating "Given the number of objectives in the allocation and use of spectrum, and the differing solutions for achieving them, choices made for 700 MHz could be far-reaching in setting the direction for future policy decisions."

I hope that yours and my representatives in Congress take the time to read this relatively brief yet fact-filled (21 page) report. Hmmmm.....perhaps a few readers of this blog will be kind enough to forward a copy of the report to them along with your thoughts and suggestions on spectrum matters??


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