DISH Responds to Accounts of Proposed FCC Order on Wireless

  DISH Responds to Accounts of Proposed FCC Order on Wireless

  *Calls draft “significantly flawed”; could add years of delay to network
    build out
  *FCC plan would take a quarter of DISH uplink spectrum to favor incumbent
    Sprint; no net spectrum gain, hurts competition and jobs
  *Urges FCC to adopt power and emissions levels as it originally proposed
  *With appropriate rules, DISH ready to invest billions, trigger tens of
    thousands of jobs

Business Wire

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- November 20, 2012

DISH is responding to news today that the Federal Communications Commission
(“FCC” or “Commission”) has circulated a proposed order related to rules that
would, once approved by the full Commission, govern 40 MHz of broadband-ready
AWS-4 wireless spectrum controlled by DISH Network Corporation (NASDAQ: DISH).

“While the FCC’s proposed order, based on reported accounts, does properly
address some of the opportunities with this spectrum, it’s significantly
flawed by introducing serious limitations that impair its utility,” said R.
Stanton Dodge, DISH executive vice president and general counsel.“While the
FCC would grant full terrestrial rights, its proposal to lower our power and
emissions levels could cripple our ability to enter the business.

“The good news is that this proposed order is not final and we urge Chairman
Genachowski and the Commissioners to recognize that the DISH plan delivers on
the greatest public interest – the most investment, the most jobs and the most
spectrum,” said Dodge. “We stand ready to work with the full Commission on
final rules that put the full AWS-4 spectrum to work for America and that
advance the future potential of the H Block.”

DISH has declared its intent to launch a wireless business assuming the FCC
delivers rules making it economically and technically feasible to do so. The
company expects to invest billions and trigger tens of thousands of jobs to
create a wireless broadband network that would power a variety of mobile and
fixed devices, including smartphones, tablets and computers.


In the draft order, the FCC appears to back a proposal, advanced solely by
Sprint, calling on DISH to disable 25 percent of its uplink spectrum and
impair another 25 percent of that spectrum to accommodate possible future use
of neighboring H Block spectrum by Sprint.

The FCC does not currently license H Block spectrum, and that spectrum is
unused today. Sprint, which controls more than 200 MHz of wireless spectrum,
has expressed interest in acquiring rights to the 5 MHz H Block.

“Sprint’s position on the H Block would render useless 25 percent of DISH’s
uplink spectrum – so that Sprint is positioned to merely gain the exact same
amount of spectrum,” said Dodge.“This is a zero-sum approach that does not
result in a net spectrum gain for the American consumer when the wireless
economy needs access to all available spectrum. Nor does this approach add


The Sprint plan embodied in the proposed order would likely force a reopening
of the standards-setting process led by the Third Generation Partnership
Project. Without 3GPP approval, wireless companies do not have the required
technical blueprints needed to design and build everything from cellphone
chipsets to broadband networks.

“If the FCC adopts this draft, the 3GPP specification will likely be reopened
and an FCC rulemaking will be needed for the H Block,” said Dodge. “Until we
know how to manage issues like interference from the H Block, we may have to
put on hold activities like radio design and network build out while we wait
for the H Block rulemaking and another 3GPP process to be completed.”

DISH expects new approvals could add years to a process that has
alreadylasted20 months since it acquired two bankrupt companies in an effort
to bring this spectrum to the market.This 40 MHz of spectrum remains on the


“DISH’s position is consistent with more than 20 years of FCC precedent. The
AWS-4 rulemaking should be completed with the power and emissions levels that
were recommended by the FCC in its April Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM)
and supported by most commenters (with the notable exception of Sprint), and
which would not require DISH to effectively surrender 25 percent of its uplink

“The H Block should be subject to the same auction and rulemaking processes
that have applied to other spectrum bands for decades,” said Dodge. This
approach will ultimately free up the H Block for its highest-and-best use
based upon input from all interested parties, and will lead to more
investment, more jobs, more competition and more spectrum for wireless

About DISH

DISH Network Corporation (NASDAQ: DISH), through its subsidiary DISH Network
L.L.C., provides approximately 14.042 million satellite TV customers, as of
Sept. 30, 2012, with the highest quality programming and technology with the
most choices at the best value, including HD Free for Life. Subscribers enjoy
the largest high definition line-up with more than 200 national HD channels,
the most international channels, and award-winning HD and DVR technology. DISH
Network Corporation's subsidiary, Blockbuster L.L.C., delivers family
entertainment to millions of customers around the world. DISH Network
Corporation is a Fortune 200 company. Visit


Bob Toevs, 303-723-2010
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