T-Mobile, TV networks voice spectrum concerns

21 Oct 2008

T-Mobile USA says it is considering legal action to halt the government’s planned sale of wireless spectrum in the AWS-3 band. The cellco is concerned that services using the AWS-3 spectrum will interfere with its own 3G networks which operate in the adjacent AWS-1 band. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) recently completed a study into the issue and found that there was no significant risk of harmful interference. T-Mobile disagrees with its findings, however, and the firm’s vice president of regulatory affairs, Kathleen Ham, has told Wireless Week that it is considering litigation if the FCC decides to proceed with the auction next year as planned.

Separately, a group of US TV broadcasters have called on the FCC to allow them more time to examine a recent report which studied the effects of opening up unused TV spectrum – so-called ‘white spaces’ – for new services. The four US TV networks – ABC, CBS, NBC and Fox – want the FCC to postpone its vote on the future use of white spaces until everyone has a chance to comment on the findings of the report, the Wall Street Journal writes. The broadcasters say that the executive summary of the FCC’s 149-page study, which says that there are no grounds for concern over interference, goes against some of the findings in later pages.

United States, T-Mobile US