AT&T, Verizon Will Dominate New Airwaves

Wireless spectrum auction saw no major first-time entrant
By Laila Weir,  Newser User
Posted Mar 21, 2008 1:37 PM CDT

(Newser) – AT&T and Verizon were the two top bidders in the airwaves auction that ended this week, representing 80% of the FCC’s record $19.6 billion haul and positioning themselves to offer advanced wireless Internet services, reports the Wall Street Journal. Google, sans licenses, was another winner, gaining open access to a chunk of spectrum that mostly went to Verizon.

Verizon also agreed before the auction ended to open its network to outside devices. AT&T won 227 spectrum licenses around the country for $6.6 billion, while Verizon got 109 licenses for $9.4 billion. The auction didn’t produce any major new entrants, though Dish Network acquired a significant share of licenses. Auction winners must not discuss their plans for the spectrum before early April.