The FCC settles a long-standing controversy between satellite radio and the 2.3 GHz Wireless Communications Service

After years of technical and legal wrangling among competing interests,  the FCC has dipped into its spectrum pool and generously doled out 25 MHz for mobile broadband service in the U. S.,  while protecting nearby satellite radio, aeronautical mobile telemetry operations, and deep space network operations from harmful interference. This action in the Wireless Communications Service (WCS) 2.3 GHz band  is a small start on the National Broadband Plan’s recommendation for 500 megahertz of additional spectrum for broadband use over the next ten years.

The previous WCS rules had very strict limits on out-of-band emissions, primarily to protect satellite radio in the adjacent band. Those limits effectively precluded mobile operation. The FCC has now relaxed the limits, permitting mobile use. At the same time, it gave Sirius XM, the sole remaining satellite radio licensee, permanent authority to operate from terrestrial towers, thus providing for better service in built-up areas (and also making satellite radio in those areas less susceptible to interference from WCS).

The FCC also enhanced the build-out requirements for WCS licensees. Some were running late under the previous schedule, but now have a fresh start.

Please contact an FHH attorney if you’re interested in acquiring some of this spectrum.