Wireless-Spectrum Bidders Beware

Economist David Salant says neither the government nor the winners will end up getting a good deal in the FCC's huge auction

The Federal Communications Commission wireless-spectrum auction slated for Sept. 12, 2001, has been billed as the biggest potential money-maker of any U.S spectrum auction to date. The spectrum, in the 700-megahertz range, has long been coveted by wireless companies, which hope to use it to build third-generation (3G) wireless networks that allow for fast data transmission and such "killer apps" as streaming video. Some analysts have predicted that the sale of 12 licenses with 14-year terms could bring in $30 billion, nearly double any previous U.S. wireless auction.

To continue reading this article you must be a Bloomberg Professional Service Subscriber.