June 09 2014
In our previous report, we established that policymakers must choose among competing outcomes when the agency makes spectrum allocation decisions, including the number of licenses the agency wants to award, the cost to build out the licenses, and network speeds based on channelization. In light of the FCC's recent decisions in the AWS-3 and incentive auction proceedings, the agency appears to have decided that more narrow spectrum channels, allocated across smaller geographic areas, is the preferred outcome. Europe, on the other hand, has opted to allocate spectrum in wider channels. This note attempts to analyze whether the FCC's spectrum allocation choices will put US wireless carriers at a disadvantage when it comes to the speed of their networks, as compared to providers in other countries using wider channelizations.