FCC Approves DISH Wireless Licenses for Smartphone Service
On December 12, 2012, DISH announced that the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has made the decision to allow DISH to use their recently acquired wireless spectrum licenses, for which they have been seeking approval.
What does this mean for DISH?
With the FCC's permission to use satellite-phone airwaves, Dish Network plans to offer smartphone service. As the second-largest provider of satellite television, there’s a possibility that DISH’s wireless offerings, which are still in the development stage, will eventually compete with other cellular phone service providers that also offer pay-TV service, such as Verizon and AT&T. While the FCC did win in favor of regulating DISH’s airwave usage in, according to the FCC, an effort to prevent interference with government frequencies that are set to be auctioned, DISH felt that limiting power with regulations would make it more difficult to enter the market as a wireless competitor. However, DISH largely applauded the decisions of the FCC regarding their new wireless efforts, as DISH Senior Vice President and Deputy General Counsel Stated:
“The commission has taken an important step toward facilitating wireless competition and innovation. Following a more thorough review of the order and its technical details, Dish will consider its strategic options and the optimal approach to put this spectrum to use for the benefit of the customer.”
Despite the fact that certain requirements and regulations are met with opposition by DISH, executives are overall pleased with the result of the rulings.
DISH Partnership with Sprint
In the wake of progress in DISH’s wireless project, Sprint approached DISH to discuss a partnership that they intend to prove mutually beneficial. Their plan is to allow DISH to offer mobile phone service over the Sprint network while Sprint will stand to gain access to Dish Network’s satellite airwaves.
Sprint’s vice president for government affairs, Larry Krevor, thinks that the FCC’s allocation of the wireless spectrum for commercial broadband use, particularly as relevant to DISH, will “bring more wireless broadband directly to customers” and “promote economic growth, investment, innovation, and increase the economic competitiveness of the U.S.”
Why did the FCC do it?
The FCC allowed DISH use of the wireless spectrum in an effort to work with companies who are fulfilling the rising demand for mobile internet service via smartphones and tablets. They have, as of lately, been loosening old restrictions on airwave usage to allow for more companies like DISH to introduce wireless programs that are both competitive with other providers and complementary to their services, making it easier for customers to enjoy wireless service on the go.
Do you think DISH smartphones will be successful on the market?
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