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Government Announces AWS-3 Spectrum Auction, and Will Set Aside 30 MHz For Wireless Startups

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We’ve heard from the government plenty of times that they want more wireless choice, lower prices, and better service for Canadian subscribers. The year started with a wireless auction for the 700 MHz spectrum, and today, as a further step toward fostering wireless competition, Industry Minister James Moore announced the government will make available AWS-3 spectrum licences to wireless players, starting next year.

The AWS-3 spectrum is ideal for delivering fast, reliable services to smartphones, tablets, and mobile devices, and it includes 50 MHz of paired spectrum adjacent to the AWS spectrum auctioned six years ago. What’s more important, though, is that the AWS-3 spectrum is well-suited for deploying LTE technology, the technology Wind Mobile’s Anthony Lacavera was after in his recent speeches.

To increase competition in the wireless landscape and make more spectrum available to new entrants, the government will set aside one 30 MHz block of AWS-3 spectrum for each region of the country for wireless startups. This means that carriers with less than 10% national and 20% provincial or territorial market share can bid on the set-aside spectrum licences where they already provide wireless service.

“Our government will continue to make decisions that will lead to more choice, lower prices and better service for Canadian consumers. Today’s announcement will help operating new entrants acquire valuable new spectrum to help expand their networks and deliver fast, reliable service to Canadians. The rules for this auction, consistent with the ones for the 700 MHz and 2500 MHz auctions, will encourage more competition in the wireless market while ensuring the interests of consumers first,” Industry Minister James Moore said today.

The auction will take place before the 2500 MHz auction scheduled for April 2015. This could represent a great opportunity for Wind Mobile to secure the much-needed spectrum and increase the potential of the carrier.

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  • Zestylemon

    I’ve always said that if wind mobile could increase its coverage outside the GTA, I’d sign up in a heart beat.

  • deltatux

    They have been doing that slowly, they’ve been concentrating their efforts in Southern Ontario. They just lit up their Brantford/Paris network 2 weeks ago.

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