FCC approves AT&T’s spectrum grab


Around the time AT&T’s failed attempt to acquire T-Mobile was being hatched, the company also had its eyes on much-sought-after airwaves from Qualcomm. Yesterday the Federal Communications Commission, perhaps trying to prove that it doesn’t look down on everything AT&T does, approved the $1.9 billion purchase. Qualcomm no longer had a use for the spectrum (don’t we all have a *little* spectrum laying around in a closet somewhere?), which it used to serve its failed cable TV service. AT&T wants the spectrum to beef up its LTE network. The catch for AT&T, however, is that this spectrum only runs one way - it enables downloads. Good, if you’re trying to stream a movie. Not so good, if you’re trying to send a movie. The one bright spot for AT&T in this purchase is that it costs about $37 billion dollars less than trying to take over T-Mobile. Quick, check under your bed for spectrum. I think I might know a buyer!

About the author

Marc Sanchez is the technical director and associate producer for Marketplace Tech Report where he is responsible for shaping the sound of the show.

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