The reality, however, is that T-Mobile has had no issuesrepositioning itself as a champion of small carriers everywhere inits vocal opposition to Verizon's proposed deal to purchasespectrum from several major cable companies. During a conferencecall held by the newly formed Alliance for Broadband CompetitionMonday, T-Mobile Regulatory Affairs Vice President Kathleen Hamsaid that her company is opposed to Verizon's prospective spectrumacquisition because of the impact it will have on consumers. RELATED: Verizon offers to sell some 700MHz spectrum in olive branch togovernment GOOGLE REED-ER: AT&T Wireless chief slaps down T-Mobile's comically misleadingnew ad "Our principle opposition comes down to the public interest," shesaid during the call. "It will lead to excessive concentration ofspectrum in the hands of the nation's largest carrier." Ham went on to say that Verizon's acquisition of the spectrum wouldblock competitors from getting the spectrum they needed to launchtheir own LTE offerings and also criticized Verizon for sitting ona significant chunk of LTE-capable spectrum that could be used toenhance its current mobile broadband services. She also questionedwhy Verizon would already need more spectrum for LTE when only 9%of its subscribers are using the network and when the company isn'teven close to hitting capacity on its LTE services. |
To further emphasize Ham's arguments, T-Mobile released a statementoutlining its core objections to the proposed deal, especiallyemphasizing that the company believes the deal to be "against thepublic interest." T-Mobile's opposition to the proposed Verizon deal comes on theheels of its recent acquisition of 7MHz of spectrum that itreceived from AT&T as compensation for the failed merger between the two carriers . With the new spectrum in tow, T-Mobile at last has enough tobuild out its own nationwide LTE network using the 1710MHz-1755MHzband for the uplink and 2110MHz-2155MHz band for the downlink.T-Mobile has said that it will launch its own LTE services nextyear. Verizon's plan to buy AWS spectrum has been controversial eversince the company announced late last year that it planned topurchase 122 AWS licenses from Comcast, Time Warner and BrightHouse for $3.6 billion. The company subsequently worked out a dealwith Cox to purchase 20MHz on the AWS band for $315 million.
Thedeal has attracted the attention of both lawmakers and governmentregulators as the FCC has asked Verizon to deliver a wide range ofinformation on its spectrum holdings and its plans for the spectrumit wants to acquire from the cable companies. Among other things,the letter asked Verizon to detail why spectrum in the prized lower700MHz band was not suitable for expanding out LTE at a nationwidelevel; whether the company had considered repurposing spectrumcurrently used for other services; to provide all analyses abouthow Verizon would use the companies' spectrum for its LTE servicesand to detail the cost impacts of adding the spectrum to its LTEportfolio; and to provide a timeline of all talks between Verizonand the cable companies leading up to their proposed spectrum deal. Brad Reed covers Google, wireless carriers and mobile applicationsfor Network World. Be sure to check out Google Reed-er, a blogfilled with his ramblings on Google and whatever else he feels likediscussing. Follow him on Twitter at @bwreednww.
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