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The Internet of Things and the Importance of Unlicensed Spectrum

August 5, 2015 FCC , Internet of Things , Spectrum Auction , Spectrum Reform , Unlicensed Spectrum

On July 29, the Senate Commerce Committee held a hearing on “Wireless Broadband and the Future of Spectrum Policy,” where Ranking Member Bill Nelson observed, “[t]oday, there are more wireless devices in this country than there are people.”

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DISH, the Spectrum Auction, and the Wrath of Commissioner Pai

February 3, 2015 FCC , Spectrum , Spectrum Auction , Spectrum Reform

Commissioner Ajit Pai is outraged! This in itself would not be news. Sadly, Commissioner Pai seems to spend most of his time these days outraged — usually while denouncing his Democratic colleagues on the supposed death of collegiality at the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) (we will pause to savor the irony). What is news is that Commissioner Pai has actually picked up an issue I’ve championed since 2006 — reform of the “designated entity” (DE) bidding credit. Unfortunately, as is too often the case IMO, Pai directs his outrage at the wrong target. Rather than seeking constructive solutions to the tension between auction theory (which favors the largest incumbents) and competition theory (which holds the need to make sure someone wins licenses other than the largest incumbents), Pai has decided to direct his wrath at DISH for finding a loophole in the auction structure stacked against them.

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