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FCC Ignores Protests, Begins Next mmWave Sale

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) pressed ahead with plans to auction 24GHz spectrum, despite a request from politicians to delay the proceeding.

In a letter, two senior members of the House of Representatives’ Science, Space and Technology Committee accused the FCC of dismissing concerns expressed by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and NASA that use of the spectrum could interfere with sensors in adjacent bands used for weather and climate forecasting.

The committee members sought a delay until the FCC addressed the issue with NOAA, NASA and the US Department of Defence.

“Our concern is not with 5G technology….However, advancements in telecommunications should not come at the expense of the safety and security of the American people.”

FCC representative Brian Hart told The Washington Post the agency will move ahead with the auction as scheduled and said it was “perplexing to be asked to postpone this auction the day before it is going to start” given planning had been underway for more than a decade.

Bidding for 24GHz licences is scheduled to begin at 10:00 ET today (14 March). A total of 38 companies have qualified to take part, including AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile US, US Cellular and Sprint (through subsidiary ATI Sub).

The auction is the FCC’s second mmWave proceeding following a 28GHz auction which concluded in January. Winners from that sale will be announced at the end of the latest proceeding.―Mobile World Live

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