Originally published: April 12, 2012
Last updated: April 19, 2012 - 2:30pm
T-Mobile questioned Verizon's need for more airwaves in a blog post and urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to block the company's planned deal with a coalition of cable companies.
T-Mobile, the smallest of the four national carriers, accused Verizon of exaggerating its need for the additional airwaves. "These deals are anything but routine and, if granted, would unduly tip the scales in favor of the largest wireless carrier at a critical juncture in the mobile broadband industry," wrote Steve Sharkey, T-Mobile's vice president of government affairs. Verizon's analysis of spectrum efficiency is based on dividing its total number of subscribers by its nationwide average amount of spectrum. But Sharkey argued that because spectrum holdings can vary between markets, a nationwide average is "pointless." He said it is unfair for Verizon to include spectrum in T-Mobile's total that the company will acquire as a result of the breakup of its deal with AT&T because the FCC still has to approve that transfer. Sharkey also argued that the spectrum Verizon already has is superior to T-Mobile's spectrum. A majority of Verizon's spectrum is below 1 GHz, but all of T-Mobile's is above 1 GHz.
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