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Author Topic: Post Auction/Repack  (Read 5678 times)

Dan Mortensen

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Post Auction/Repack
« on: June 11, 2017, 03:47:33 am »

After the World's Fair here the grounds were turned into City-owned Seattle Center, with multiple performance venues and art spaces. It has a big sound department which now has a wireless mic license.

Two of the SC RF experts and I were talking the other day about our world going forward from the recent reverse auction, and they surprised and dumbfounded me with their description of our current reality.

Although it seemed that what I'd heard regarding the couple of years' grace period meant that we would be able to use over 608MHz gear until that time, what they say it means is that we have that grace period until it is illegal for us to use those frequencies, which is not the same thing.

What it does NOT mean is that the buyers of that spectrum cannot use it; what THAT means is that the new owners can start using it any time they want, starting now. They don't have to send out any warnings, and if they are using it, it is likely that we won't be able to regardless of it not being illegal for us to use.

Is this true from your understanding, too?

Incidentally, the only White Spaces devices in use in the United States (maybe the world?) were at Seattle Center and used on the backside of a free public Wifi network to connect the routers to the Internet connection, eating up 36MHz of bandwidth in the process. Much or all of that bandwidth was within the SC licensed spectrum, and they complained to the FCC about their spectrum being in effect taken away.

It took over 6 months, but those White Spaces devices disappeared and were more than adequately replaced by fiber. This means there are no White Spaces devices now in use anywhere, although the over 700MHz spectrum is in active use for phones.

Both of these situations seem significant. In the one, if correct, we can lose our ability to use mics over 608MHz at any time with no warning. In the other, all the hullabaloo about White Spaces devices was some kind of smokescreen to get something else accomplished, i.e. emptying space over 700MHz formerly used by wireless mics.

Are those reasonable interpretations?
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John Sulek

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2017, 10:05:11 am »

After the World's Fair here the grounds were turned into City-owned Seattle Center, with multiple performance venues and art spaces. It has a big sound department which now has a wireless mic license.

Two of the SC RF experts and I were talking the other day about our world going forward from the recent reverse auction, and they surprised and dumbfounded me with their description of our current reality.

Although it seemed that what I'd heard regarding the couple of years' grace period meant that we would be able to use over 608MHz gear until that time, what they say it means is that we have that grace period until it is illegal for us to use those frequencies, which is not the same thing.

What it does NOT mean is that the buyers of that spectrum cannot use it; what THAT means is that the new owners can start using it any time they want, starting now. They don't have to send out any warnings, and if they are using it, it is likely that we won't be able to regardless of it not being illegal for us to use.

Is this true from your understanding, too?

Incidentally, the only White Spaces devices in use in the United States (maybe the world?) were at Seattle Center and used on the backside of a free public Wifi network to connect the routers to the Internet connection, eating up 36MHz of bandwidth in the process. Much or all of that bandwidth was within the SC licensed spectrum, and they complained to the FCC about their spectrum being in effect taken away.

It took over 6 months, but those White Spaces devices disappeared and were more than adequately replaced by fiber. This means there are no White Spaces devices now in use anywhere, although the over 700MHz spectrum is in active use for phones.

Both of these situations seem significant. In the one, if correct, we can lose our ability to use mics over 608MHz at any time with no warning. In the other, all the hullabaloo about White Spaces devices was some kind of smokescreen to get something else accomplished, i.e. emptying space over 700MHz formerly used by wireless mics.

Are those reasonable interpretations?

There is a clip on the Radio Active Designs website ... the CEO of T Mobile promising the roll out of their new 600Mhz services by the end of 2017.
If I paid 8 billion dollars I guess I wouldn't want to explain to the shareholders why we weren't using it right now.
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Scott Helmke

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2017, 03:32:49 pm »

What's happening in the next three years is that various markets will have their stations moving around (the repack) in phases. For instance, here in Chicago we're in phases 6 and 8, meaning that the first batch of station moves happens late summer 2019, then the second and final batch happens early 2020. 

As I understand it, currently empty space that has been purchased will be available for the purchasers fairly soon, but for the already-occupied space (where there are still TV stations) they'll have to wait until those TV stations move into their final assignments.  Some of this scheduling is rather vague; the stations that have chosen to give up their channels will have to vacate within three months after having been paid for doing so.

Professional Wireless has a nifty animated map showing the various markets and their repack schedules.
http://www.professionalwireless.com/600-mhz-fcc-auction/

But basically yes - at this point everything above 608MHz is either going to be still occupied by a TV station that will eventually move, or may be in possession of a purchaser hot to start testing and deploying. And when the TV stations leave for lower channels their vacated space will then be in possession of a purchaser.
« Last Edit: June 11, 2017, 03:37:11 pm by Scott Helmke »
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Philip Roberts

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2017, 05:49:15 pm »

So two questions on this topic that I'm not clear on:

- when will we know frequency assignments for LPTV stations?
- Can the new licensesees use mis-matched uplink & download bands during the transition period?  Ex t-mobile has licenses in my area for block B-E, existing TV blocks ether the uplink or downlink of each of the 4 blocks. Can T-mobile use the their C and D downlink blocks with their B and E uplink blocks?
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Henry Cohen

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2017, 10:31:20 pm »

So two questions on this topic that I'm not clear on:

- when will we know frequency assignments for LPTV stations?

January or February of 2018


Quote
- Can the new licensesees use mis-matched uplink & download bands during the transition period?  Ex t-mobile has licenses in my area for block B-E, existing TV blocks ether the uplink or downlink of each of the 4 blocks. Can T-mobile use the their C and D downlink blocks with their B and E uplink blocks?

As long as an entire downlink block and uplink block are clear, the carrier can begin to offer subscriber services. They do not have to be matched, but the the new services can not cause interference to adjacent full power or class A television services. However, they will use whatever portions of downlink and uplink blocks that are clear to begin equipment testing and propagation studies, if they so choose. They don't need full or matched blocks for those types of initial tests.
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Henry Cohen

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Philip Roberts

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #5 on: June 13, 2017, 11:07:34 pm »

January or February of 2018


As long as an entire downlink block and uplink block are clear, the carrier can begin to offer subscriber services. They do not have to be matched, but the the new services can not cause interference to adjacent full power or class A television services. However, they will use whatever portions of downlink and uplink blocks that are clear to begin equipment testing and propagation studies, if they so choose. They don't need full or matched blocks for those types of initial tests.

Thanks
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Rick Earl

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2017, 08:26:16 am »

January or February of 2018


Is the other post-repack data available correct or proposed?
I have found information like this: http://www.fccinfo.com/CMDProEngine.php?sCurrentService=TV&tabSearchType=Appl&sAppIDNumber=1125498
I'm  wondering it's accuracy as I have a large number of units in the upper 500Mhz range and that is where most of the TV stations in this area seem to be moving after repack.  Trying to plan and budget for the future, which takes time in an academic environment.  Some indoor venues will probably be OK from what I can tell with scans so far (even nearby high powered stations don't seem to penetrate), but our football stadium systems probably wont fare as well.
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David Simpson

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2017, 09:07:00 am »

Shure offered a webinar that addresses many of these issues a couple of weeks back. I thought it was worth my time listening to it. Here is a link to it for anyone who might be interested. Lots of good info in it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aqyiAYQqFp8&feature=youtu.be

~Dave
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Henry Cohen

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #8 on: June 14, 2017, 04:03:59 pm »

Quote
Is the other post-repack data available correct or proposed?
I have found information like this: http://www.fccinfo.com/CMDProEngine.php?sCurrentService=TV&tabSearchType=Appl&sAppIDNumber=1125498
I'm  wondering it's accuracy as I have a large number of units in the upper 500Mhz range and that is where most of the TV stations in this area seem to be moving after repack.  Trying to plan and budget for the future, which takes time in an academic environment.  Some indoor venues will probably be OK from what I can tell with scans so far (even nearby high powered stations don't seem to penetrate), but our football stadium systems probably wont fare as well.

Cavell Mertz has a comprehensive FCC database retrieval engine (one of the better layouts IMO), so the information presented by them is actual FCC data; it's as accurate as the FCC records in near real time.
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Henry Cohen

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Pete Erskine

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2017, 10:22:12 pm »


Yesterday 6/15/17 the FCC issued T-Mobile hundreds of licenses for 600 MHz operations at many locations around the USA.
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Cailen Waddell

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #11 on: June 18, 2017, 09:02:57 am »

Yesterday 6/15/17 the FCC issued T-Mobile hundreds of licenses for 600 MHz operations at many locations around the USA.

I'm assuming It won't be long for our area, T-Mobile is already putting in lots of co-location permits where I live to start deploying the physical infrastructure...  while I knew it was coming, the speed at which we are losing spectrum post-auction is much faster than I expected. 


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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Kevin Maxwell

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2017, 09:23:02 am »

Yesterday 6/15/17 the FCC issued T-Mobile hundreds of licenses for 600 MHz operations at many locations around the USA.

Do you have a link that lists the locations and frequencies of these licenses? How much power will these sites be? In other words how much of an area will be affected by each site? I am just wondering if this is anything that will affect anyone around where I am. Or am I asking the wrong questions or in the wrong way?
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Brian Bolly

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2017, 12:23:20 pm »

Do you have a link that lists the locations and frequencies of these licenses? How much power will these sites be? In other words how much of an area will be affected by each site? I am just wondering if this is anything that will affect anyone around where I am. Or am I asking the wrong questions or in the wrong way?

There's some interactive maps here:

http://www.spectrumgateway.com/600-mhz-spectrum

It doesn't seem to list actual frequencies that I can tell, but does show bandwidth.  T-Mobile looks like they are the largest consumer of the 600MHz spectrum, and according to various news articles from this week, plan on rolling out things in that band by the end of the year. 
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Robert Schoneman

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #14 on: June 24, 2017, 07:50:11 pm »

Yesterday 6/15/17 the FCC issued T-Mobile hundreds of licenses for 600 MHz operations at many locations around the USA.

I've been looking at the licenses issued in my market, combined with the re-pack info, and it appears there will be plenty of 600MHz whitespace left after all is said. Is there any legal reason that I won't be able to operate 600MHz equipment, provided it doesn't interfere with any licensees?
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Henry Cohen

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #15 on: June 25, 2017, 11:51:26 am »

I've been looking at the licenses issued in my market, combined with the re-pack info, and it appears there will be plenty of 600MHz whitespace left after all is said. Is there any legal reason that I won't be able to operate 600MHz equipment, provided it doesn't interfere with any licensees?

Yes: The legal reasons are: 1) Those bands sold at auction are no longer allocated to Part 74 broadcast auxiliary or Part 15 services, and 2) the equipment you own now that can operate in the auctioned bands will automatically lose its FCC certification July 2020. Thus, you would be operating uncertified / non-approved equipment, and doing so in licensed bands without a license. (Last I recall, fines were $11,600.00 per day per incident, where each transmission, or channel, is considered and "incident", but do check with your telecommunications counsel.)

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Henry Cohen

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Robert Schoneman

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #16 on: June 25, 2017, 12:06:07 pm »

Yes: The legal reasons are: 1) Those bands sold at auction are no longer allocated to Part 74 broadcast auxiliary or Part 15 services, and 2) the equipment you own now that can operate in the auctioned bands will automatically lose its FCC certification July 2020. Thus, you would be operating uncertified / non-approved equipment, and doing so in licensed bands without a license. (Last I recall, fines were $11,600.00 per day per incident, where each transmission, or channel, is considered and "incident", but do check with your telecommunications counsel.)

Bummer. In our market there's only 20MHz of downlink and 20MHz of uplink that was purchased between T-Mobile and Dish Network. That leaves a lot of bandwidth that I could easily use with some Lectrosonics Block 25 and C3-banded BTR's which would both be well clear of the licensed bands. Do all Part 74 and 15 devices lose their FCC certification for any 600MHz operation effective July 2020? Seems a shame to lose 100MHz of spectrum to 40MHz of licenses.
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Henry Cohen

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #17 on: June 25, 2017, 12:37:14 pm »

Bummer. In our market there's only 20MHz of downlink and 20MHz of uplink that was purchased between T-Mobile and Dish Network. That leaves a lot of bandwidth that I could easily use with some Lectrosonics Block 25 and C3-banded BTR's which would both be well clear of the licensed bands. Do all Part 74 and 15 devices lose their FCC certification for any 600MHz operation effective July 2020? Seems a shame to lose 100MHz of spectrum to 40MHz of licenses.

Any current equipment that can tune to a frequency =>614  will lose its cert at that time. There is however consideration at FCC (which will be voted upon Wednesday 6/28) that if the OEM can provide a firmware update so the affected equipment will be restricted in the tuning to the 614-617 range and duplex gap at the 20mW power level, the equipment will automatically receive a new certification, but if approved, that compliance mechanism would need to be worked out.
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Henry Cohen

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Jason Glass

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #18 on: June 25, 2017, 07:52:54 pm »

Any current equipment that can tune to a frequency =>614  will lose its cert at that time. There is however consideration at FCC (which will be voted upon Wednesday 6/28) that if the OEM can provide a firmware update so the affected equipment will be restricted in the tuning to the 614-617 range and duplex gap at the 20mW power level, the equipment will automatically receive a new certification, but if approved, that compliance mechanism would need to be worked out.
Hi Henry,

What are your thoughts on part 74 licensees applying for STA or Experimental service licenses in 600 band spectrum on blocks not licensed to telecom at specific locations? I remember reading about a certain professional wireless sys... er, company doing just that for gigs after the 700 MHz reallocations, with equipment that had lost certification.

Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk

Cameron Stuckey

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #19 on: June 25, 2017, 07:59:53 pm »

Hi Henry,

What are your thoughts on part 74 licensees applying for STA or Experimental service licenses in 600 band spectrum on blocks not licensed to telecom at specific locations? I remember reading about a certain professional wireless sys... er, company doing just that for gigs after the 700 MHz reallocations, with equipment that had lost certification.

Sent from my Nexus 5 using Tapatalk

Speaking Los Angeles, Block G went unauctioned in that market. That's 10MHz of unused, and unusable spectrum in a market that will probably end up with 18MHz-24MHz of useable spectrum.
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Henry Cohen

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #20 on: June 26, 2017, 07:53:16 am »

What are your thoughts on part 74 licensees applying for STA or Experimental service licenses in 600 band spectrum on blocks not licensed to telecom at specific locations? I remember reading about a certain professional wireless sys... er, company doing just that for gigs after the 700 MHz reallocations, with equipment that had lost certification.

It's certainly something we'll be doing, and have done in 700MHz after that transition period ended.
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Henry Cohen

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Jason Glass

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #21 on: June 26, 2017, 11:56:13 am »

Speaking Los Angeles, Block G went unauctioned in that market. That's 10MHz of unused, and unusable spectrum in a market that will probably end up with 18MHz-24MHz of useable spectrum.

Hi Cameron,

I was just examining the data found here https://auctiondata.fcc.gov/public/projects/1000/reports/assignment-results_by_license and see that block G is indeed missing from LA.  This strikes me as strange, because it's the one of very few examples that I can find on the list where a block isn't shown as sold.  Considering that LA is the second largest market in the nation, I must wonder if we're certain that this omission from the list isn't an error?

UPDATE:
I just noticed discrepancies between license grant announcements here https://auctiondata.fcc.gov/public/projects/1000/reports/assignment-results_by_license and here https://transition.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2017/db0614/DA-17-582A3.pdf I hope the former is kept up to date, and the latter was published 6/14/17.  Nashville, for example, shows blocks A through G on the current PRS page, while the PDF shows only blocks A through F.

Looks like we'll have to continually sift through multiple documents to get to the bottom of what's actually happening.
« Last Edit: June 26, 2017, 12:08:55 pm by Jason Glass »
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Cameron Stuckey

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #22 on: June 26, 2017, 08:07:21 pm »

UPDATE:
I just noticed discrepancies between license grant announcements here https://auctiondata.fcc.gov/public/projects/1000/reports/assignment-results_by_license and here https://transition.fcc.gov/Daily_Releases/Daily_Business/2017/db0614/DA-17-582A3.pdf I hope the former is kept up to date, and the latter was published 6/14/17.  Nashville, for example, shows blocks A through G on the current PRS page, while the PDF shows only blocks A through F.

Looks like we'll have to continually sift through multiple documents to get to the bottom of what's actually happening.

I actually trust the PRS over that Attachment B at this moment.

Last week after the FCC had granted all the licenses to the bidders a few of us discovered the licenses were granted using the 126MHz band plan, and not the correct 84MHz band plan. The FCC has now rectified the error and all the licenses correctly reflect the correct frequency changes. So, I would trust documents prior to June 9th, or after today. That June 14th license release had errors from top to bottom.
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Jason Glass

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Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #23 on: June 26, 2017, 08:54:19 pm »

I actually trust the PRS over that Attachment B at this moment.

Last week after the FCC had granted all the licenses to the bidders a few of us discovered the licenses were granted using the 126MHz band plan, and not the correct 84MHz band plan. The FCC has now rectified the error and all the licenses correctly reflect the correct frequency changes. So, I would trust documents prior to June 9th, or after today. That June 14th license release had errors from top to bottom.

Thank you, Cameron.  I appreciate the info.

ProSoundWeb Community

Re: Post Auction/Repack
« Reply #23 on: June 26, 2017, 08:54:19 pm »


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