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MSS Spectrum Should be Quickly Deployed for Mobile Broadband

MSS Spectrum Should be Quickly Deployed for Mobile Broadband

Lenard files Comments with FCC on Ligado License Modifications

Contact: Amy Smorodin
(202) 828-4405

May 19, 2016 – The Federal Communications Commission should approve the license modifications for Ligado’s mobile-satellite service networks, which represent a significant block of spectrum that can quickly be deployed, states TPI President Thomas Lenard in comments  filed today with the FCC. “This proceeding should be the last hurdle in making the Ligado spectrum available for mobile broadband use.”

In his comments, Lenard states the need for additional spectrum for mobile broadband “is well established and was central to the Commission’s 2010 National Broadband Plan.”  In the near term, the Ligado spectrum is the only significant block of spectrum already licensed and can be deployed for mobile broadband significantly faster than spectrum expected to be freed up by the broadcast incentive auction.

Ligado’s proposed operational restrictions and license modifications reflect agreements Ligado has reached with major GPS device firms to resolve concerns about potential harmful interference. In addition, Ligado has submitted engineering test results showing the GPS devices will work appropriately if the spectrum is used consistent with the conditions negotiated with the manufacturers.

“By approving the proposed license modifications, and thereby resolving the dispute with the GPS industry,” Lenard explains, “the Commission can produce significant benefits for millions of users of mobile broadband services and for the U.S. economy more generally.”

Lenard further warns that not approving the license modifications would work against the administration’s goal of freeing government spectrum and making it available to the commercial sector. “Failure to approve the current proposed license modifications would effectively achieve the opposite result by transferring a large block of spectrum from the commercial sector back to the government.  The Commission should avoid this possibility by approving the Ligado proposal expeditiously,” he concludes.

The comments are available on the TPI website.

The Technology Policy Institute

The Technology Policy Institute is a non-profit research and educational organization that focuses on the economics of innovation, technological change, and related regulation in the United States and around the world. More information is available at https://techpolicyinstitute.org/.

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