Ina Fried

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Verizon Says It Will Sell Some Spectrum if It’s Allowed to Buy Other Spectrum

iStockphoto | italianestro

Verizon Wireless said on Tuesday that it will sell some of its vast spectrum holdings. Well, at least it will if it gets regulatory approval for a pending deal to acquire a bunch more spectrum from the cable companies.

The carrier said it will sell off all of the 700 MHz A and B licenses it got in a 2008 auction — if it is allowed to buy the AWS licenses it wants to get from the cable company consortium. Verizon says its 700 MHz C band spectrum and the AWS frequencies are enough for its LTE network.

However, it made it clear that its plans to sell the A and B band spectrum is contingent on government approval for several AWS purchase plans that are being reviewed by the Federal Communications Commission and Department of Justice. Verizon has pending deals to acquire spectrum from Cox and Leap Wireless as well as SpectrumCo — an entity owned by Comcast, Time Warner Cable, and Bright House Networks.

Verizon said it is announcing the sale now “to ensure the process can move forward quickly once the AWS license transfers have been completed.” Cynical observers might think they want to push regulators just a teenie bit, too.

“Since wireless operators, large and small, have expressed concern about the availability of high-quality spectrum, we believe our 700 MHz licenses will be attractive to a wide range of buyers,” Verizon VP Molly Feldman said in a statement. “Moreover, provided our acquisition of AWS spectrum is approved, our open sale process will ensure these A and B spectrum licenses are quickly and fairly made available for the benefit of other carriers and their customers.”

(Image courtesy of iStockphoto|italianestro)


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus