Carriers Warn of Crisis in Mobile Spectrum
By BRIAN X. CHEN April 17, 2012
AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Sprint say they need more radio spectrum, the government-rationed slices of radio waves that carry phone calls and wireless data.
The wireless carriers say that in the next few years they may not have enough of it to meet the exploding demands for mobile data. The result, they ominously warn, may be slower or spotty connections on smartphones and tablets. They imply in carefully couched language that, given the laws of supply and demand, the price of cellphone service will soar.
It will affect "the services they're paying for because of the capacity issues," said Ed McFadden, Verizon's vice president for policy communications. "It potentially hinders our ability to meet consumer need."
But is there really a crisis? Some scientists and engineers say the companies are playing a game that is more about protecting their businesses from competitors.
Not even the inventor of the cellphone, Martin Cooper, is convinced that the wireless industry faces a serious challenge that cannot be overcome with technology. Mr. Cooper, a former vice president of Motorola and chairman of Dyna L.L.C., an incubator for new companies, says that claims of a so-called spectrum crisis are largely exaggerated.
...***** Moderator's Note *****
The article quotes an FCC spokesman saying that the FCC has to "Unleash" more spectrum. When government employees start parroting the hype of the industry they are supposed to regulate, it's time to unleash the Professional Standards department.
Bill Horne Moderator