Carolina West Wireless issued a press release earlier this week detailing its winnings in the recent auction of broadcast spectrum in the 600 MHz band. The company bid a total of $10.2 million to win spectrum in 32 counties in western North Carolina and northeastern Tennessee covering a population of more than 2.2 million people.
In the press release, Carolina West Wireless CEO Slayton Stewart said the company will use the spectrum to “strengthen and expand existing LTE coverage and increase capacity to meet the growing business and consumer demand for more mobile data – as well as creating the network foundation for the next generation of wireless services.”
Spectrum in the 600 MHz band is considered low-frequency or low-band spectrum. It is well suited for rural areas because it supports greater range in comparison with higher-frequency spectrum.
Carolina West Wireless
Carolina West Wireless is one of relatively few rural wireless carriers that have been successful in a tough market in which some other carriers struggle to make a profit. In addition to having some of its own spectrum, the company also participates in the Verizon LTE in Rural America (LRA) program, which enables rural carriers to use Verizon spectrum to support LTE networks in their communities.
Carolina West is one of several Verizon LRA participants, along with Cellcom and others, that won spectrum in the 600 MHz auction – and the decision to bid appears to have been a good one, as Verizon did not win any spectrum in the auction.
Winning bids in the 600 MHz auction were announced last month, but winners had to meet certain additional requirements to cement their win, which is likely why Carolina West did not issue a press release about the win until this week.