February 12, 2020
The FCC C-Band Auction and the Future of 5G
Last week the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) announced that it would hold a public auction later this year for the C-Band — a section of spectrum that is essential for the deployment of 5G. Some have criticized the speed of a public auction, but the proposed rules for the sale minimize the potential for delays and the risks of falling behind on 5G leadership, writes AAF’s Director of Technology and Innovation Policy Jennifer Huddleston.
While the C-Band auction is important to the roll out of 5G, so too is the public-policy approach to spectrum taken more generally. Given the growing number of connected devices, consumers and innovators will benefit from quicker deployment and more connectivity when currently underutilized spectrum is reallocated for more needed purposes rather than simply held by existing owners or agencies. While secondary markets could best encourage the most efficient and highest-valued allocation, ideally a public auction can take any diminishing of these incentives into consideration and attempt to redress them to achieve as similar a solution as possible.