The FCC released its second list of authorized winning bidders in Auction 108 of spectrum in the 2.5 GHz band and once again, the biggest winner – T-Mobile – is missing from the list.
The auction was completed in late August and the first list of authorized winners was released a month ago.
T-Mobile was by far the biggest winner in the auction. Its winning bids totaled $304.3 million and represented over 90% of the licenses won in the auction.
Perhaps because of that, the FCC is being extremely thorough in its review.
2.5 GHz Auction
The licenses included in Auction 108 were largely in rural areas. Prior to the auction, T-Mobile already had licenses in the band in many areas, including virtually all major metro markets. The company obtained those licenses when it merged with Sprint, which had amassed them over the years.
Licenses in the 2.5 GHz auction were awarded by county, with individual counties having up to three licenses available. T-Mobile won over 7,000 licenses in the auction. Only one other winner won more than 100.
Among the other nationwide providers, Verizon won only 12 licenses in the auction, while neither AT&T nor Dish won any.
The 2.5 GHz band is considered mid-band spectrum, which is viewed as supporting the optimum mixture of speed and coverage for 5G. The spectrum is suitable for mobile or fixed wireless use.
Other winning bidders were comprised, in large part, of small providers serving rural areas. Today’s authorization list includes four small providers, including Farmers Mutual Telephone Company, Michigan Wireless, Northwest Open Access Network and Rocky Mountain Broadband.