T-Mobile has caught some flak for its service quality in the past, but the magenta carrier has been working to improve its network quite a bit recently, rolling out 4G LTE and Voice over LTE at a speedy pace. Today T-Mo revealed that it wants to improve its network even further, but it says that the FCC needs to change a few rules so that it can do so.
Kathleen Ham, T-Mobile’s VP of Regulatory Affairs, said today that Magenta has asked the FCC to increase the reserve of low-band TV spectrum that’ll be auctioned off in the near future. The FCC has already said that it’ll set aside some of that spectrum for smaller carriers like T-Mobile, but T-Mo thinks that that amount should be increased to a full 50 percent of the amount of spectrum that’s put up for sale.
Ham says that the FCC’s ruling that there needs to be two minimum sale prices for these spectrum licenses needs to change. One minimum is that the proceeds from the auction need to be used to compensate broadcasters, relocation costs, funding for the US emergency network and more. However, there’s a second minimum that T-Mobile calls an “arbitrary figure based on a complex formula involving the US population and the bandwidth available.” T-Mo says that this figure creates a barrier to entry that doesn’t need to exist, and therefore it should be abolished.
I’m sure that most of us can agree that better networks and increased competition among carriers is a good thing, and it sounds like the changes that T-Mobile want enacted will help smaller operators gain more low-band spectrum that can be used to offer improved service inside buildings and over long distances. Now we just have to wait and see how the FCC responds.