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RF Shorts for Oct. 11, 2013

FCC Shutdown Could Delay Spectrum Auctions
Bloomberg news reports that U.S. wireless executives are saying that the federal government shutdown will delay business before the FCC and could complicate the FCC's upcoming spectrum auctions. Speaking at an Oct. 9 panel discussion hosted by the Telecommunications Industry association, Tom Sugrue, senior VP of government affairs at T-Mobile USA, Inc. said, “One week, sure we can all make that up. If we're talking a third, there could be a real negative impact on the timing of [the auctions]. There are some statutory deadlines that could be put at risk.”

The Bloomberg article also quotes Jim Cicconi, AT&T's senior executive VP of external and legislative affairs.

“I understand that people aren't there to actually do the work,” said Cicconi. “That doesn't mean you close the website down to deprive people of the databases that are available or, frankly, to file something online. And yet other agencies have kept their websites open. It engenders some disrespect for the process when you have these kinds of anomalies in implementation.”

(As I pointed out last week, the FCC FTP sites remained open even after all its websites were shut down.)

See Bryce Baschuk's article Wireless Executives Say Shutdown Will Delay FCC's Spectrum Auctions at for additional quotes and more details as well as the AT&T Statement on Debt Ceiling and Potential U.S. Government Default.

Mobile Revenues Predicted to Fall in 2018
Caroline Gabriel reports: “Mobile operators face the toughest period in their short history as markets become saturated and over-competitive, and will have to find ways to add value and compete on service quality not market share.” The conclusions come from a new study by Ovum, which predicted West European carrier's revenues would decline at a compound annual growth ratio of 1.5 percent up to 2018, while cell companies will face revenue decline on a global basis for the first time in history in 2017-2018.

The greatest opportunities are in Africa. (See Caroline Gabriel's article Mobile revenues will fall for first time ever in 2018 – Global connections will struggle to grow by 4 percent a year while revenues will rise at half that rate as markets mature at )

The Ovum report makes me wonder whether all those predictions about an explosive demand for wireless bandwidth will hold up over the next five years.

Comments and RF related news items are welcome. Email me at

Doug Lung

Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.