Next week the Competitive Carriers Association kicks off its annual spring show, this time in San Antonio, Texas, and attendees can expect keynote presentations from SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son and Roger Sherman, the new chief of the FCC's Wireless Telecommunications Bureau. (Sherman is filling in for FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler, who was scheduled to keynote the CCA event but instead now has to testify before Congress.) And key topics at the CCA event will include how to ensure smaller carriers can fully participate in the FCC's upcoming spectrum auctions, as well as how LTE roaming will work, whether competitive carriers will be able to offer Voice over LTE technology, and how they can offload data to Wi-Fi networks.
AT&T's acquisition of Leap Wireless and its Cricket brand has now received FCC approval, but it will be a few months before AT&T aggressively promotes what it has dubbed the "new Cricket," according to financial analysts.
The FCC approved AT&T's acquisition of Leap Wireless, the last hurdle the Tier 1 carrier needed to overcome to gain control of the regional prepaid provider and its Cricket brand. AT&T has vowed to retain the Cricket brand and compete aggressively on price in the prepaid market using the brand.
Oceus Networks has told the FCC that a bi-directional sharing framework providing military access to the paired 1755-1780 MHz and 2155-2180 MHz bands could fulfill training requirements on remote bases and ranges with limited impact to auction revenues.
Two-year-old startup Mimosa Networks wants the FCC to open up the 10.0-10.5 GHz band for lightly licensed broadband services that would share the spectrum with the band's current users--ham radio operators as well as federal and non-federal radiolocation services.
The Competitive Carriers Association, along with several other groups representing rural carriers, put forward what they have termed as a middle-of-the-road approach to the area spectrum licenses should cover in the 2015 incentive auction of 600 MHz broadcast TV spectrum.
WASHINGTON—SoftBank CEO Masayoshi Son said he aims to deliver wireless downlink speeds of 200 Mbps and lower prices to U.S. consumers via Sprint to inject more competition in the wired and wireless broadband market. Son made the pitch shortly after saying in an interview that he would like to combine Sprint with T-Mobile US to ignite a "massive price war" in the U.S. market, though he said no firm deal has been struck.
The FCC is poised to open more of the 5 GHz band for unlicensed Wi-Fi use, though the exact rules for doing so are not yet finalized.
T-Mobile US' decision to raise pricing by $10 per month on its unlimited smartphone data plans was needed to monetize increasing data traffic and get back a return on improving its network, according to T-Mobile CFO Braxton Carter.
FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel said the FCC should seize a near-term opportunity to use more of the 5 GHz band for unlicensed wireless use, and also explore ways to make use of guard bands that will be produced in the 600 MHz spectrum auction for unlicensed purposes.