Wheeler not only has to manage an enormously complex spectrum auction next year, he faces two huge policy debates: the battle over net neutrality and the ramifications of the telecom industry’s transition to IP.
Wheeler will take over an FCC about to oversee a huge transfer of airwaves from the broadcast to the mobile industry, as well as wrestle with issues such as net neutrality and carrier consolidation.
The PCS H-block auction only accounts for a small amount of spectrum, but given the ridiculously high value carriers have put on mobile airwaves recently, it’s bound to attract attention.
Softbank certainly has the money to counter Dish’s offer, but Dish has much more to offer than cash, namely valuable spectrum and a huge TV network.
The government is hoping that making a band of unlicensed spectrum available as part of the upcoming incentive auctions will help build a nationwide wireless network. Is that the best use of that spectrum?
The presidential election will have big impacts on our nation’s tax policies and spending plans over the next four years, but who wins or loses will also play a role in telecommunications policies that will affect every individual on their cell phone and their land lines.
The FCC wants to kick off an incentive auction in 2014 that would buy back TV airwaves from the broadcasters and sell them to mobile operators at a premium. The plan isn’t without critics, but in general it was lauded by both consumer groups and carriers.