The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has granted 154 spectrum licenses to tribal applicants for mid-band (2.5 GHz) spectrum.
The FCC’s efforts aim to address unserved populations on tribal lands by facilitating the deployment of fixed wireless service in that band and via other efforts. Fixed wireless broadband is gaining momentum. The recently completed CBRS auction is expected to help fuel that momentum.
Tribal 2.5 GHz Licenses
The newly announced licenses, granted under the FCC’s Rural Tribal Priority Window, provide for exclusive use of up to 117.5 megahertz of 2.5 GHz band spectrum, which license holders can use to provide broadband and other advanced wireless services, including 5G, to rural Native American communities.
More than 400 applications were received during the window. The granted licenses may not be the only ones awarded. The FCC is still reviewing other applications received during the window.
“This is a major step forward in our efforts to close the digital divide on Tribal lands,” said FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, in a prepared statement about the Tribal 2.5 GHz licenses. “Few communities face the digital connectivity challenges faced by rural Tribes. By prioritizing Tribal access to this mid-band spectrum, we are ensuring that Tribes can quickly access spectrum to connect their schools, homes, hospitals, and businesses.”
A list of the grantees for this spectrum may be found here.