When should merging mobile operators be required to divest spectrum?
Dec 08, 2017 by Spectrum Research Service Blog

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Talk of a merger between US carriers T-Mobile and Sprint came to nothing but stimulated lots of discussion about how much spectrum they would have to give up.

This made us wonder: do merging operators always have to give up spectrum? How do competition authorities decide how much divestiture is needed?

This week’s research note tries to answer those questions and included a helpful summary of the key cases.

Research notes

8 December 2017 at 11:55
Talk of a merger between US carriers T-Mobile and Sprint came to nothing but stimulated lots of discussion about how much spectrum they would have to give up. This made us wonder: do merging operators always have to give up spectrum? How do competition authorities decide how much divestiture is needed? The short answer is: […]

3.5 GHz in Ireland: the first auction of a higher frequency “5G” band

29 November 2017 at 17:23
Despite better than expected revenues, the prices paid in Ireland suggest that operators regard 5G bands as a welcome addition rather than a prerequisite for a new era of mobile services. By early 2016 WRC-15, the US and European regulators had identified a range of possible 5G frequencies and the focus is now on three bands where […]

FCC 600 MHz incentive auction

17 November 2017 at 16:25
In March 2017 the FCC assigned licences in the 600 MHz band by means of an incentive auction where broadcasters offered their spectrum through a reverse auction and this was made available to operators through a forward auction. The auction raised USD 19.7 billion and awarded licences in 70 MHz of the 600 MHz band to 50 […]

Biggest winners in the US 600 MHz auction

17 November 2017 at 16:10
These graphs show the licences won by the five biggest winners in the 2017 US incentive auction. Licences bought by T-Mobile Licences bought by Dish Licences bought by COMCAST Licences bought by Bluewater Wireless Licences bought by AT&T

Auction Tracker updates

Greece 1800 MHz 8 December 2017 at 12:00

Bangladesh 1800 MHz, 900 MHz and 2100 MHz 8 December 2017 at 12:00

Czech Republic 3.6-3.8 GHz 29 November 2017 at 00:00

Austria 3.4-3.8 GHz “5G auction” 27 November 2017 at 00:00

Sweden 2.3 GHz 20 November 2017 at 15:47

News articles

Greece renews 1800 MHz spectrum licences

8 December 2017 at 11:31
Greek telecoms regulator EETT has assigned eleven 2 x 5 MHz blocks of spectrum in the 1800 MHz band to local operators Cosmote, Vodafone and Wind Hellas, thereby meeting its goal of replacing temporary authorisations with long-term licences by the end of 2017. EETT special adviser Grigorios Karimalis told PolicyTracker that in total, the three […]

Egypt suggests Sharm El Sheikh could host WRC-19

7 December 2017 at 13:45
The Egyptian resort, where 224 tourists were killed by a suspected ISIS attack in October 2015, could become the fourth location to host the event, first held in 1979 (WARC-79). Francois Rancy, director of the Radiocommunication Bureau of the ITU, told PolicyTracker that an ITU conference can be held in any member country. The host […]

India’s operators in no hurry for another spectrum auction

5 December 2017 at 14:45
Several Indian mobile operators, including Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular, have used their responses to a consultation on a new round of spectrum auctions to suggest that the regulator adjust its timeline for further spectrum assignments. In the consultation paper, issued in August, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) invited comments and counter comments on […]

Next Chilean administration asked to reform spectrum policy

4 December 2017 at 13:18
Mobile industry association the GSMA has called on Chile’s next administration to introduce more spectrum liberalisation and policy predictability, but praised the country’s current practice of awarding spectrum through beauty contests. The GSMA released a public policy document (in Spanish) calling for a number of reforms that it said would help to optimise the use of spectrum […]

RSPG Opinion on PMSE spectrum leaves some stakeholders disappointed

1 December 2017 at 14:07
There is no current need for more EU-wide harmonised spectrum for programme-making and special events (PMSE) and additional PMSE requirements should be addressed case-by-case at the national level, the EU’s Radio Spectrum Policy Group (RSPG) said in a final “Opinion” on a long-term strategy on future spectrum needs for wireless and video PMSE. Separately, UK […]

Satellite industry faces up to threat of relocation from C-band in Asia-Pacific

30 November 2017 at 14:41
Inmarsat could be one of those to lose out as satellite operators contemplate relocation from parts of the C-band (3.4-4.2 GHz) in a number of Asian countries. Australia, China, Hong Kong, New Zealand and Singapore are among those countries which plan to reallocate spectrum in 3.3 GHz to 3.7 GHz from satellite services to mobile […]