Washington – The Senate Judiciary Committee spent time Wednesday more closely examining the state of wireless competition and what is impeding a more competitive marketplace. The hearing comes ahead of a government auction that will license wireless spectrum to be relinquished by TV broadcasters. Lawmakers and the FCC weigh the state of competition when devising rules for everything from spectrum aggregation to roaming and interconnection rules.
The Computer & Communications Industry Association has advocated for a competitive telecommunications marketplace for more than 40 years. The following can be attributed to CCIA President & CEO Ed Black:
“It is useful for policymakers to hear more about the challenges smaller carriers confront from gaining access to spectrum to negotiating deals with larger competitors so their customers have seamless mobile Internet access.
“The upcoming spectrum auction — how much spectrum is available and how it is divided among mobile carriers — will impact how consumers access the mobile Internet and what they pay for years to come. We are glad to see policymakers examining the state of competition more closely at this critical juncture.
“Small carriers, including T-Mobile, did an excellent job at the hearing illustrating the challenges they confront in competing in the wireless marketplace. We hope this information adds to the growing consensus for the FCC to adopt reasonable spectrum aggregation limits. Given the current state of spectrum holdings, no single bidder should be allowed to win all the spectrum in the upcoming incentive auction. How the FCC resolves this issue will have an enormous impact on how competitive the wireless market will be and how often government regulators would need to step in to solve other problems that result when markets become less competitive and less responsive to consumers and better able to block competitors and new entrants.”