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International Circuit

PALs auction raises $1.6 billion in bids

The PALs with the highest prices as of the close of Round 23 are:

Los Angeles county, CA: $16 million
Cook county, IL: $8.5 million
Harris county, TX: $6.1 million
San Diego county, CA: $5.1million
Orange county, AZ: $4.9 million
On the basis of demand, the most hostly contested counties and their populations as of Round 23 are:

Los Angeles county, CA: 9.8 million
San Diego county, CA: 3.1 million
Brown county, Wisconsin: 248,000

Cook county, IL: 5.2 million and New York county, NY: 1.6 million (tied)
Dallas county, TX: 2.4 million and Hidalgo county, TX: 775,000 (tied)
According to analysis by Sasha Javid, COO at the Spectrum Consortium and former chief data officer and legal advisor on the FCC’s Incentive Auction Task Force, the average price per megahertz/POP continues to creep upward and was at $0.080549 after the 23rd round of bidding. Demand in recent rounds has concentrated on some of larger and mid-sized markets, after broad interest in counties large and small during earlier rounds. In the top 20 counties by excess demand, Javid’s analysis as of Round 23 shows only two counties with 20,000 people or fewer currently make that list, and three additional counties with populations less than 1 million.

Demand continues to move toward equilibrium: As of Round 23, there were fewer than 500 counties where demand was greater than the supply of seven PALs, down from 721 at the end of Round 16. Demand met supply in 1,614 counties, and supply was greater than demand in 1,172 counties. The auction will continue until demand is equal to or less than the supply of available PALs.

Bidding continues today with two more rounds. The auction kicked off July 23 with a single, six-hour round and met its reserve price of $108 million by the end of that first round of bidding.

The CBRS Priority Access License auction, known as Auction 105, makes available 22,631 PALs in the CBRS band at 3.5 GHz. That figure breaks down to seven PALs per county-based license area across the United States: the highest number of licenses that the FCC has ever made available in a single auction. Each PAL consists of a 10 megahertz unpaired channel at 3.55-3.65 GHz. Entities can bid on up to four PALs per license area and aggregate them; in addition to PALs, 80 megahertz of the 150 megahertz band is available for use under the General Authorized Access (GAA) tier of the CBRS spectrum-sharing framework. If PALs are unsold at the close of the auction, the spectrum can be assigned for GAA use. According to Javid’s tracking, only 18 counties had no bids at all as of the close of round 22 of bidding. RCR Wireless

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