Summary: Chairman Pai's C-band Proposal

Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai shared draft rules that would reform the use of the C-band and make a large amount of spectrum available for 5G, the next generation of wireless technology. The C-band is a 500-megahertz segment of spectrum from 3.7 to 4.2 GHz, which is now mostly used by fixed satellite companies to beam content to video and audio broadcasters, cable systems, and other content distributors. However, satellite companies don’t need the entire C-band to provide the services they are providing today. They can provide the same services with less bandwidth, which would free up a significant amount of spectrum for 5G.

Chairman Pai’s draft rules would make the lower 280 megahertz of the C-band available for flexible use, including 5G, through a public auction. Existing satellite operations would be repacked into the upper 200 megahertz of the band with relocation costs covered. This strikes the appropriate balance between making available critical mid-band spectrum for 5G and protecting incumbent uses. This would be the FCC’s most significant action yet to repurpose mid-band airwaves and would represent a critical step toward securing US leadership in 5G. It would quickly free up a significant amount of spectrum for next-generation wireless services, and it would generate significant revenue for the US Treasury. The full FCC will vote on this Report and Order on Feb 28, 2020 at the FCC’s Open Meeting.

Summary: Chairman Pai's C-band Proposal Chairman Pai Speech Announcing the C-band Proposal Comm. O'Rielly Statement on Circulation of C-Band Order Carr Announces Strong Support for FCC Action on C-Band Key 5G Mid-Band Spectrum in Sight with Pai’s December C-Band Auction Proposal (telecompetitior) C-Band Auction Plan Envisions $9.7 Billion Payments Starting in 2021 (Multichannel News)