The FCC announced the winners of the 28 and 24 GHz Spectrum Frontiers auctions, (known as auctions 101 and 102) on Monday, June 3. Not surprisingly, Verizon took most of the 28 GHz licenses. At 24 GHz, AT&T and T-Mobile fought for the best position.
28 GHz Licenses
At 28 GHz, Verizon won 1,066 licenses in 863 markets, paying $506 million, which is 72 percent of the total raised.
The second highest bidder, U.S. Cellular, won 408 licenses in 362 markets, spending $129 million or 18 percent of the total.
T-Mobile netted 865 licenses in 864 markets for $39.3 million and — a distant fourth — Windstream Services won 106 licenses in 106 markets, paying $6.2 million.
The total net bids were some $700 million, from 33 bidders chasing 2,965 licenses.
24 GHz Licenses
At 24 GHz, AT&T and T-Mobile bid 89 percent of the total funds raised for 75 percent of the licenses. T-Mobile won more licenses than AT&T — 1,346 versus 831 — yet spent less — $803 million versus $982 million. The rationale for that outcome is to be found in the partial economic areas (PEA) where each company’s licenses are located.U.S. Cellular and Starry, a wireless internet service provider, took 282 and 104 of the 24 GHz licenses, respectively. The 24 and 28 GHz auctions added 690 licenses to U.S. Cellular, a regional carrier and the fifth largest cellular operator in the U.S. according to Wikipedia.