FCC approves AT&T's $1.9b purchase of Qualcomm's 700MHz spectrum (update)

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    Christmas has come early to the execs at AT&T, who are likely celebrating the FCC’s 3-1 approval to purchase Qualcomm’s block of the 700MHz spectrum for $1.9 billion. The news comes as a bittersweet victory for Ma Bell, whose efforts to acquire T-Mobile turned sour earlier this year. Qualcomm’s block of the airwaves, once used to facilitate FLO TV, now sits unused. Once the acquisition is complete, AT&T will use the new share of spectrum to increase download capacity for its burgeoning LTE network.

    For the FCC’s part, it has approved the deal with only a few stipulations: AT&T will be required to satisfy interference requirements and must offer data roaming to its competitors on the spectrum. That’s not to suggest everyone’s pleased, however. Rural cellular providers asked that, as part of the deal, AT&T must ensure that its LTE network is interoperable with the bands used by smaller networks. Sadly, the FCC has denied this request, ostensibly limiting the little guy from receiving Ma Bell’s hand-me-downs.

    Update: AT&T has gone ahead and released a wee bit of celebratory PR, which we’re including after the break. Most importantly, it expects to wrap up the finer details in the next few days.

    Continue reading FCC approves AT&T’s $1.9b purchase of Qualcomm’s 700MHz spectrum (update)

    FCC approves AT&T’s $1.9b purchase of Qualcomm’s 700MHz spectrum (update) originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 22 Dec 2011 21:20:00 EDT. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

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    FCC approves AT&T's $1.9b purchase of Qualcomm's 700MHz spectrum (update)

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