Reuters: FCC unlikely to side with T-Mobile over 600MHz spectrum auction terms

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With every spectrum auction comes the potential for T-Mobile to add more much-needed airwaves to its portfolio. Sadly, it also comes with months of lobbying, petitions and various other forms of general coaxing by different companies trying to make sure they get the best terms possible. In T-Mobile’s case, that’s never been truer than with the 600MHz incentive auction due to begin next year. Our favorite carrier has been trying to make sure more of the available spectrum is easier for the smaller carriers to acquire. In short: Harder for Verizon and AT&T, easier for T-Mobile.

Sadly, according to Reuters‘ exclusive report this afternoon, the FCC is currently “leaning toward rejecting” the request by T-Mobile to set aside more airwaves for the little guys.

FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, often the FCC’s swing vote in the three-member Democratic majority, appears disinclined to revisit the current plan, those and other people also said. All sources spoke anonymously because the matter is not yet public.

FCC spokesman Neil Grace said the FCC staff are working on various auction-related matters: “At this time, that preparatory work is active, remains ongoing, and no decisions have been made.”

This request by T-Mobile has been put forward after the FCC had already changed the auction terms once before. Last year, the Commission change the terms to ensure that in each market, a certain amount of spectrum was kept for smaller carriers or carriers which don’t already own a ton of spectrum in that area. But T-Mo wasn’t happy with the end outcome, and has been pushing for even more of the spectrum to be set aside. Current rules reserve up to 30 megahertz (less than half) of the spectrum. T-Mobile wants that raised to 40 megahertz.

T-Mo’s argument seems sound enough. AT&T has a huge amount of the U.S. spectrum already, and have enough cash to blow on buying the majority of airwaves available next year at the auction. T-Mo on the other hand doesn’t have the same amount of spectrum (not by a long shot) and doesn’t have anything close to the spending power of “Dumb and Dumber” (as Legere likes to call them). That said, the argument also comes across as T-Mobile asking the Commission for special treatment just because it’s smaller and VZW and AT&T are bigger and more powerful.

Exactly what the Commission decides is yet to be seen. We’re expecting a decision within the next few weeks, and if Reuters’ report is correct, we might just have to be content in the auction rules changes implemented last year.

If you want to read more in to this report, head on over to the exclusive at Reuters.com.

Source: Reuters

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  • archerian

    T-Mobile is a big proponent of competition unless they are facing it in an auction – there they prefer protection.

    • Fabian Cortez

      T-Mobile is a big proponent of competition unless they are facing it in an auction – there they prefer protection.

      Your logic is flawed as this is a scarce and limited resource that is controlled by the government and owned by the people.

      • archerian

        All that you say about scarce and controlled by the government is true, but how does that flaw my logic? To your point, if its scarce and people owned, why not maximize return on it especially when all participants are private companies and not in it for altruism?

        Legere is always talking about being in the big leagues, it’s pay to play, can’t complain against ATT and VZW when in the last auction it wasn’t them that took away whatever T-Mobile could have bid for. T-Mobile came ready to bid, it was too rich for them so they withdrew and started complaining about the Big 2 when it was someone else who stole the cookies. Someone far smaller as far as wireless is concerned.

        • Fabian Cortez

          All that you say about scarce and controlled by the government is true, but how does that flaw my logic? To your point, if its scarce and people owned, why not maximize return on it especially when all participants are private companies and not in it for altruism?

          Because the idea isn’t to maximize its return for a monetary profit as, while the resource may be scarce, it is infinite in nature, meaning that it doesn’t deplete once consumed by one entity. The idea is to maximize its usefulness for the benefit of the people and unfortunately, the twin bells displayed a trend of anything but said altruism.

          And no, I wouldn’t leave this spectrum solely in the hands of Sprint and T-Mobile.

          Legere is always talking about being in the big leagues, it’s pay to play, can’t complain against ATT and VZW when in the last auction it wasn’t them that took away whatever T-Mobile could have bid for. T-Mobile came ready to bid, it was too rich for them so they withdrew and started complaining about the Big 2 when it was someone else who stole the cookies. Someone far smaller as far as wireless is concerned.

          So now you go back to ignoring the scarce resource and the history behind the twins bells and their leverage due to possessing this resource for decades?

          If you want a free-for-all sub-1GHz auction and the chaos that ensues, then take a hard look at the results from the 2008 700 MHz auction.

        • archerian

          I don’t think there is any direct co-relation between maximizing the usefulness of spectrum for the people and reserving it for 4-6 major entities instead of a free auction with maximum cost, especially when they are all private corporations who are tasked with maximizing shareholder value and not society value. And when the reserved portion is can be taken by huge companies that use legal loopholes to “pose” as small entities.

        • Fabian Cortez

          Again, pay close attention to the last two auctions and also understand how the twin bells got into the position that they are in today via the use of sub-1 GHz spectrum.

          You keep bringing this back to maximum cost which is not the purpose of these auctions.

        • archerian

          Again, pay close attention to the last two auctions and also understand
          how the twin bells got into the position that they are in today via the
          use of sub-1 GHz spectrum.

          T-mobile didn’t have any funds to bid on the 2008 700Mhz auction as it spend around $5B a year or so earlier for AWS. Can’t blame anyone else for not money to pony up. It was chaos for T-mobile, so its chaos for everyone?

          You keep bringing this back to maximum cost which is not the purpose of these auctions.

          of course its a purpose of the auctions, maybe not the only one. How can you claim maximum bid price isn’t an objective when the FCC entices TV operators to repackage with slide decks promising profit sharing? And when the FCC delays the auction to VZW can recover and shore up on its capital? VZW threatening to not participate means lesser competition and lower prices. If maximum bid amounts were not a criteria, then they wouldn’t need an auction.

          My point is any reservation of spectrum for “smaller” players or keeping away “bigger” players is moot when they are all in it to make money. Any provisions put in place to “protect” smaller players didn’t work last time, so what’s stopping them from happening again? T-mobile will create walled 30Mhz gardens it thinks it can get cheaply, but will most likely be outbid by another “small” DE Subsidy.

        • Fabian Cortez

          T-mobile didn’t have any funds to bid on the 2008 700Mhz auction or it chose not to as it spend around $5B a year or so earlier for AWS. Can’t blame anyone else for not choosing to pony up. It was chaos for T-mobile, so its chaos for everyone? They didn’t bid in 2008, later paid VZW for chunks of it and now say they can’t compete?

          They haven’t blamed anyone for not participating in the 700 MHz auction. If they blamed anyone, it would be the government lingering on AWS-1 longer than scheduled.

          I think it was a smart decision not to participate in the 700 MHz auction, especially the way it turned out. Look at the mess we have today due to the efforts and lobbying of AT&T and Verizon.

          And yes, it’s hard to compete with two carriers that control 75-80% of the total sub-1 GHz spectrum in this country when you only have 12 MHz paired that can barely be used.

          of course its a purpose of the auctions, maybe not the only one. How can you claim maximum bid price isn’t an objective when the FCC entices TV operators to repackage with slide decks promising profit sharing? And when the FCC delays the auction so VZW can recover and shore up on its capital? VZW threatening to not participate means lesser competition and lower prices. If maximum bid amounts were not a criteria, then they wouldn’t need an auction.

          As long as you feel it’s about maximum cost then you will continue to misunderstand what it’s all about. If the government wanted money, there are plenty of other places to get it. And the little bit of money they get from these auctions are but a drop in the bucket in the financial problems plaguing this nation.

          My point is any reservation of spectrum for “smaller” players or keeping away “bigger” players is moot when they are all in it to make money. Any provisions put in place to “protect” smaller players didn’t work last time, so what’s stopping them from happening again?

          Last time? What last time?

          And no, it’s not moot. It’s two-fold: make money and provide a service using the people’s spectrum.

          T-mobile will create walled 30Mhz gardens it thinks it can get cheaply, but will most likely be outbid by another “small” DE Subsidy.

          You have zero evidence of this. And based off of T-Mobile’s history and current state, there is no reason that they would move in this direction.

      • Kogashuko

        And there is plenty of 700a for sale now if they were really concerned about it but they want the cheap way out.

        • Aaron Tillery

          Again obviously don’t pay attention it’s not as simple as just buying spectrum some areas they don’t need it or can’t afford to buy it and or there’s still interference etc they have been building out 700 at a good pace stop trolling

        • JLV90

          Except most of it that isn’t being sold belongs to US cellular making huge gaps in coverage on 700. They need 600 to fill those gaps and add more capacity to their network.

        • archerian

          T-mobile for whatever reasons chose not to bid for 700Mhz in the 2008 auction. Maybe it was strategy or maybe it was lack of money from spending $5B a year ago for AWS. Net result they didn’t bid and they didn’t get any. Now they can try secondary transactions or bid for the 600Mhz, which is entirely their prerogative. But they cannot say we didnt get any 700Mhz and now we can’t buy 700Mhz nationwide and so we need protection for 600Mhz.

        • Fabian Cortez

          T-mobile for whatever reasons chose not to bid for 700Mhz in the 2008 auction. Maybe it was strategy or maybe it was lack of money from spending $5B a year ago for AWS.

          T-Mobile did not have a 3G network by the time 700 MHz was up for auction.

          I guess you also would invest in more spectrum without any ROI from a previous auction due to the government dragging their feet.

          Now they can try secondary transactions or bid for the 600Mhz, which is entirely their prerogative. But they cannot say we didnt get any 700Mhz and now we can’t buy 700Mhz nationwide and so we need protection for 600Mhz.

          They’re not saying they cannot buy 700 MHz nationwide, nor are they complaining about it.

          Again, understand the scale and scope of sub-1 GHz spectrum. Notice that they have never complained about mid or high spectrum nor did they ever ask for protection.

  • tomarone

    If the government can block acquisitions in the name of competition it can level the playing field of the competition by helping the small guys who were blocked from merging, to acquire some spectrum.

    • Fabian Cortez

      And also help the same “small guys” who weren’t handed free spectrum (cellular blocks A and B).

      • Remember who handed free spectrum to ATT and VZW? The same FCC which is shilling for them yet again.

        • archerian

          No one gave anyone “free” spectrum, and what should we do now? Maybe reserve some spectrum that’s usable today for Z-mobile when that company launches in 2035.

        • Kogashuko

          I don’t see why they should reserve anything. Tmobile came into the AWS auction unwilling to participate competitively even though they are a nation wide carrier. Why should the FCC fix it so they are bidding against small local carriers without the resources. Tmobile went in lacking to the AWS3 auction just like they are lacking in 700 MHz purchasing. They want it given to them so they can simply pocket all the money they are making. They are worse than ATT and Verizon at this point. Heck ATT spent something like 18billion compared to Tmobile’s 1billion with half the subscriber size and huge growth. They were cheap and the FCC isn’t going to continue enabling them so they can just do things like throttle data or not increase roaming coverage when giving a favorable ruling.

        • Aaron Tillery

          You should probably do your research before commenting on things T-Mobile didn’t buy a lot of spectrum last time because they had enough high frequency bandwidth and just because there growing fast they still in order to be competitive they need to build out a network like Verizon and AT&T , but do so with way less money first starters both the big two have way more revenue then T-Mobile double the subscribers again more income then T-Mobile then the avg price per customer is much higher then on T-Mobile as well as T-Mobile provides u limited data at a steal which doesn’t make as much money as say paying for data by the gb like the other two carriers this past quarter after all there bills were paid T-Mobile had a profit of around 200 million barley anything compared to the billions and billions the big two make and that was the first quarters in years T-Mobile didn’t loose money even after all these years of rapid growth ( also you jumping on the bandwagon with the throttling first it’s not the same thing as network management were they’ll slow you down for a period of time when that area is highly congested again it’s not all the time and you’ll return to normal speeds when it isn’t as congested it’s not the same as being slowed down on unlimited on verizon or att once you guy that cap and being slowed down to 2g rest of the month , I average 20 gb a month and have used as much as 177 gb in one month , with no problems and as far as coverage for myself I have verizon and T-Mobile verizon for my work phone and T-Mobile works in 90 percent of the places I go with lte that Verizon gets lte and even in some places Verizon only gets 3G

        • archerian

          T-Mobile didn’t buy a lot of spectrum last time because they had enough high frequency bandwidth and just because there growing fast they still in order to be competitive they need to build out a network like Verizon and AT&T , but do so with way less money first starters both the big two have way more revenue

          In the last auction, T-mobile had around $3B ready in the initial rounds, but withdrew when the prices increased. They were not competing against ATT or VZW but a far smaller entity, Dish who actually borrowed money to compete. You can’t blame ATT and VZW when Dish was T-mobile’s main competitor for that auction, and kicked T-mobile’s ass with borrowed money and no wireless network.

          Your other block of text is hard to read, seems like some kind of rationalization for why T-mobile fails to generate as much revenue as the Big 2. So what if they have policies that make less revenue, they should be given preferential treatment in auctions? All these companies are private companies whose main objective is to maximize shareholder value, not make the consumer happy.

        • Fabian Cortez

          No one gave anyone “free” spectrum, and what should we do now? Maybe reserve some spectrum that’s usable today for Z-mobile when that company launches in 2035. And if we were to walk down memory lane, guess who would have been shilling for AT&T back then?

          This is incorrect. Free spectrum was given.

          Also, there is no “Z-mobile” nor do you know of any plans of a carrier starting up under that name tomorrow, or in 2035.

          For what its worth, only around 3% of the spectrum AT&T currently holds was “given” to it, when it was the only entity that planned a wireless network. The rest was bought by ATT via acquisition or 3rd party deals.

          Understand the scale and scope that sub-1 GHz provides.

  • Why would it when the big players can bid more for spectrum and thus enrich the fed coffers? The FCC, as the recipient of the auction proceeds, has a blatant conflict of interest to level the playing field for the benefit of consumers.

    • archerian

      unless we have a true non-profit wireless carrier with consumer benefit as its primary goal, there is no way to do it without a conflict of interest. Providing reserved spectrum to smaller private companies isn’t for any benefit for consumers.

      • Acdc1a

        You hit the nail on the head. Don’t think for a moment that if T-Mobile or Sprint had the network to compete that they wouldn’t also gouge.

        • AS118

          They couldn’t because Verizon and AT&T would keep them in check. If T-mobile and Sprint got enough spectrum to catch up with Verizon or AT&T or at least compete better (much more likely), they wouldn’t be able to gouge, and they would have real market power to stop AT&T and Verizon (especially) from gouging themselves.

          It’s just the basic rules of competition.

  • Philz

    legere was hugging & kissing Nancy Pelosi last year he better get his spectrum

  • YABD

    This is a good topic. FCC should adapt the auction to the power spending of each player. Frequencies used by wireless carriers it is like a natural resources and everybody should have the opportunity to have a piece of it.

    • archerian

      and then what will the FCC do when the smaller carriers with their regional networks complain about roaming?

  • carol argo

    Hopefully tmo doesn’t bid on this.too close to the 700

    • MastarPete

      T-Mobile HAS TO bid on 600mhz if they want to improve in-building and improve long range coverage. If you look at the 700mhz LTE license map at the top of the page, there are WAY too many gaps that will not be fill-able anytime soon simply because some licenses are not for sale.

      • carol argo

        ?exemple of network oddity:why is my smartphone downgraded (network wise)everytime I change state?or country.exemple I go from Georgia to south Carolina,when the provider algorythm detect I changed state it send me to 2g ?why? Restart the phone or change manually from lte to another then go back to lte and there is lte?it must cost a lot resource wise to play switcheroo for no reason other then throttling customer without their noticing

        • MastarPete

          That’s a matter of the network technology in use. Back before Deutche Telecom purchased VoiceStream and re-named them to T-Mobile, VoiceStream had merged with several other regional carriers. It was those original regional carriers that built out the very first towers and back then they used GSM technology to build with (2G/GPRS/EDGE look those technologies up on wikipedia if you’re not familiar).

          3G, 4G and now LTE technologies all came along many years later and weren’t immediately deployed across the entirety of the network due to the financial constraints of being owned by Deuutche Telecom, who seemingly wasn’t investing their own money into T-Mobile prior to the failed ATT merger. Deutche Telecom apparently also had financial trouble back home in Germany so they eventually decided to sell T-Mobile to someone else further exacerbating the situation by freezing major network expansion and modernization projects. That’s why there are huge gaps of GSM (2G/GPRS/EDGE) only coverage.

          When T-Mobile finally did purchase spectrum to deploy 3G they deployed on 1700mhz, a band that was literally only in use by them. Since their customer base was much smaller than ATT and Verizon it meant their purchasing power was much weaker so phone manufacturers didn’t bother making phones with 3G band support for non–T-Mobile branded phones. It’s why imported phones meant for Europe, or unlocked 3G capable ATT phones were stuck on EDGE when used on T-Mobile.

          Part of the current situation comes down to business strategy, primarily covering large metro areas. Some is just the lack of a customer base to be able to fund the large scale purchase of newer hardware for the towers which is directly tied to having the funds to purchase new spectrum to improve capacity.

          Over the past 2 or 3 years T-Mobile has been making more of an effort to modernize its 2G network up to LTE. However they simply can’t convert an entire network to a new technology overnight without loads of cash.

        • carol argo

          Your info is probably dated,I use a Nokia 635 lte .out of the box? Insane coverage if I update it to a newer os via window insider ?its like going back to the stone age.either Ms removed a setting or the Nokia lte has not been paid for newer then cyan os.(ya tmobiile has an lte des with nokia

      • carol argo

        Don’t get me wrong t mobile have gap ,south west Atlanta GA about 70 mile from GA border?tmobile don’t exist ,not on any band,only peanut reach there.but on average (with a Nokia 635 lte ,don’t ask you know full well why,any phone not sold by network provider is sent in the priority lane z,any phone sold by network provider and updated by network provider is sent in the A lane,it sound like rubbish? It is not, its exactly what is going on ,test it go grab a 635 lte for the big 4 (yep they all offer it ,then update it via window insider ,now revert everything with nokia recovery tool and update via the included tool on phone,aside from having to manually fix lack of ram hickup (lte ,2g,lte manually)you LL notice the insane bump in coverage if on provider suplied (A lane vs Ms supplied or Z lane)I use Ms . But name any brand any way you want and all are affected. Yep there is a scenic connection and there is a highway connection (like toll road but tho one is experienced not advertized. Tmobile call it priority,but I suspect all provider made sure to name theirs diffently (that is what I would have done (FCC and all)

        • MastarPete

          Uhh, no. Sounds like you’re confusing data transfer de-prioritization with a phones ability, or lack thereof, to connect to the network on the frequency bands T-Mobile operates on.
          Two completely independent issues.

          What is the full model number of your phone?
          http://www.gsmarena.com/nokia_lumia_635-6254.php
          That site indicates the RM-975 is the model intended for use in the USA and appears to have full band support for T-Mobile, the one exception is the lack of band 12 (700mhz).

          If you bought the RM-974 then you are missing band 2 (1900mhz), band 4 (1700/2100mhz) and band 12 (700mhz), and will NOT be able to connect to LTE in the USA at all.

          Based on what you’re trying to say it sounds like you have the RM-974.
          You should see if you can return what you have, or sell it and track down the correct phone model.

    • eAbyss

      That argument makes zero sense.

      It doesn’t matter how close 600 and 700Mhz are and the fact is that T-Mobile will NEVER be able to acquire enough band 12 (700Mhz) to provide full, nationwide, lowband coverage. The 600Mhz auction is their only chance at a nationwide lowband license.

  • Raiterio Patterson

    Quit being butt munchers, FCC. Smaller carrier have just as much to spectrum as the big boys. Why would Verizon and AT&T even bid on 600MHz spectrum anyways??!!

    • Rob H.

      Short answer: Greed. What ever allows them to retain ~70% market share.

      • archerian

        what some call greed others call strategic acquisitions

        • MastarPete

          Whatever you want to call it it undermines consumer choice and increases the barriers to entry for anyone considering getting into the market. Spectrum is limited and ideally should be spread across the industry as evenly as possible. There is ZERO benefit in having two carriers holding the majority of spectrum.

        • AS118

          Exactly. We’re lucky to even have 4 major carriers to choose from, and the bottom 2 need more low-end spectrum to pressure the top 2 into treating the consumers (us) better.

          We don’t want Wireless to turn into the fiasco that is wired internet right now, with regional monopolies and high prices and no competition.

        • Raiterio Patterson

          I don’t like the fact that T-Mobile has to ask the FCC for a level playing field in regards to spectrum. USA got telecommunications backwards if you ask me. Maybe I’ll move to the UK and use Three instead

        • dtam

          you have to remember that this isn’t like any other industry. att was not allowed to buy tmo, and sprint and tmo weren’t allowed to merge. because of these reasons the FCC should keep a level playing field

    • UMA_Fan

      To keep it out of the hands of T-Mobile so they won’t be as strong.

      Low band spectrum is different. Tmobile barely has any. Low band is the only reason Verizon and att have good coverage in the boonies and in building. Verizon and Att were given their initial low band offerings for free by the government and that has allowed them to maintain a huge competitive advantage.

      • archerian

        That’s false. Only around 3% of ATT spectrum was given to them, rest was via secondary purchase or acquisition. When the industry was starting off, they got the better spectrum as only they were providing service. Later, T-Mobile chose not to buy 700mhz but spent money on AWS. Can’t blame anyone for that.

      • TylerCameron

        I’m almost certain that AT&T and Verizon have more physical towers than T-Mobile, which contributes a fair bit to their massive coverage.

        • UMA_Fan

          I don’t think they do. They would likely highly shout about most towers in their marketing.

    • Joe

      Because they know that if t-mobile would get there hands on a 10×10 nation wide licence than they would be dumbed.

      • Raiterio Patterson

        You meant to say doomed, right? LOL. 15x15MHz of LTE on band 4, 10x10MHz of LTE on band 2, & 10x10MHz of LTE 700 A block on band 12 in North Carolina is all I care about. Don’t mean to said like a snob but don’t travel much. Yes, I know tmobile doesn’t own 700MHz in NC

        • Joe

          Haha that kind of setup anywhere is what we all want. And BTW there is no 10×10 700 mhz A block spectrum

        • Raiterio Patterson

          A man can hope for the future

        • Joe

          Yeah u can but 10×10 mhz 700 A block is not even fiscally possible.

        • eAbyss

          Band 12, A block is a total of 12Mhz and only capable of a 5×5. They’d need two blocks to do a 10×10 and T-Mobile only owns additional blocks in North Dakota.

        • Raiterio Patterson

          I saw that on the map Danrant made

  • Goat

    Cam….what is you’re reasoning behind all of these ads?? Switched to a MBP w/o adblock and my God, ad’s everywhere. I get the need for money…but heck man…what’s up with this..

    • EasyFix

      Use Firefox, and install noscript. It stops all of the crap on this and every other site. I just enable the bare minimum so the site works screw the ads and pop ups!

      • Goat

        This is SO bad! If I made a .gif if would look like I was scrolling down, then the ad at the top expands and forces my view upwards .-… Common Cam D:

    • MastarPete

      the last time I saw cam comment on this he said that its phonedog that has control over the ads.

      • Goat

        Dang! That really sucks. They are unbearable..For those w/o adblock

        • AS118

          It’s not just that there are so many, it’s also because most of them are trashy clickbait Ads that are really deceptive.

      • Trevnerdio

        Yeah, we’re a sub of PhoneDog, Cam is just an (awesome) employee.

    • Cam Bunton

      I don’t have any control over them sadly. I hate them too. I’ve passed on all the complaints I get. Try and ignore them the best you can, and hopefully they’ll do something about it soon.

      • Goat

        You da man, Cam! But really, I installed AdBlock Plus, all good now :D On the other side I hope you’re right in that they do something soon.

        • Cam Bunton

          Me too. I hate the thought of frustrating so many of our readers.

  • iMotoXperiaGalaxy

    Good for the FCC!

    Haha!

  • Kogashuko

    1) they shot themselves in the foot the minute they went against net neutrality, that they so supported, when they decided to throttle unlimited users by cap 2) there is still plenty of 700 MHz A block that they could purchase but refuse to so they cant wine about not having spectrum available. 3) they are the worst wireless carrier when it comes to roaming even though the FCC clearly sided with them and they prefer to stick it to their customers 4) Verizon will be protected. Tmobile will simply not be allowed to keep sticking it to them.

    • UMA_Fan

      They never throttled unlimited data users. If you were on a congested tower you got the fastest speeds possible after everyone else got priority if you were someone using the most data relative to everyone else

      • Kogashuko

        Then every tower in the area must be congested. Speeds have slowed dramatically and I havnt gotten near 20 gigs.

        • TheRealStory556

          here in philly i consistently get between 20-30 down . when i was biking today on the outskirts of philly i actually got 62.58 down. TMO speeds have slowed? guess you haven’t been on ATT or Verizon recently if you’re actually going to b1tch about speeds….

      • eAbyss

        Throttling is purposefully reducing the speed of a certain set of users. Their QoS method ONLY effects unlimited users and doesn’t even help lower congestion on all towers. Just because they don’t set a certain speed doesn’t make QoS any less throttling than traditional methods.

    • TylerCameron

      The worst roaming carrier? LOLWUT?
      120+ countries with unlimited text and data. Boom.
      And of course AT&T isn’t gonna give T-Mobile any good roaming agreements. They have a huge upper-hand in coverage. Why would AT&T basically say “Oh, yeah, roam in any area where we cover that you don’t.”
      If that was the case, then no one would be on AT&T anymore.

  • Clippers FANactic

    Looks like T-Mobile just doesn’t have enough $$$ to put the FCC on its payroll…

    • archerian

      cheaper to put them on payroll than bid against ATT and VZW, or haven’t they figured that out? Maybe they want to cheap out – not pay off anyone and hope for reservation blocks :)

  • taxandspend

    Someone is being wined and dined by Verizon and AT&T. It’s as simple as that.

  • Richard Roma

    The American wireless market is the least competitive in the OECD and is a prime example of what happens when you let the private sector decide.

    We have no consumer protection agency like every other developed country, which is why monopolies like AT&T and Verizon continue to line their pockets at the expense of competition and Americans.

    Without at least 10×10 Sub 1Ghz spectrum, T-Mobile’s expansion strategy in the US is moot.

    • taxandspend

      A consumer protection agency, being an arm of the government, can just as easily be bought. No different than any other government officials being wooed by lobbyists.

    • J

      You let your politics show by stating “RWers, Loonitarians, and TEAnuts”, yet the FCC majority is democratic. So are you saying you agree with the FCC or disagree, and thus side with the “RWers, Loonitarians, and TEAnuts”?

    • nycplayboy78

      LOLCATS @ Loonitarians and TEAnuts :)

  • Adam

    This is why I like to play Monopoly with my kids. They have learned it is a lot easier to buy the 600MHz band, I mean Boardwalk, if they have spent the last few rounds gouging guests staying at the Marvin Gardens hotel.

  • TheRealStory556

    the FCC is a tax payer funded government agency charged with regulating various aspects of communication. they should not be in the business of “selling” spectrum that doesn’t even actually belong to them. they are merely selling the right to use it. if we the people are allowing the FCC to do this, then the FCC has an obligation to ensure an equal playing field…not give it away to the highest bidder.

    if the FCC is going to charge these carriers millions and millions of dollars, then these profits should be refunded back to the tax payers who will inevitably pay these costs on their cell phone bills in the future in the form of additional fees

    • nycplayboy78

      AMEN!!!!! But they don’t hear you though :/

  • vinnyjr

    Sounds to me like Dumb & Dumber have been greasing some pockets.

  • TK – Indy

    No one has mentioned that this auction is unique in that there are buyers (cell companies) and sellers (broadcasters). The sellers already have a big concern that FCC rules for this auction as they exist will dampen their profits, and any further dilution of their money would disastrous. It won’t happen.

  • PMB01

    It’s not about asking for special treatment. It’s about asking the FCC to help break the duopoly. We need the #3 carrier to actually be competitive with #1 and #2 where it counts: spectrum.