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Dish’s Mobile Dreams May Be Dashed

FCC Chairman Genachowski is opposed to a spectrum expansion


The Federal Communications Commission said yesterday that Dish Network‘s (NASDAQ:DISH) plan to add mobile phone service via its satellites would destroy the value of nearby airwaves.

Dish Network’s plan would allow it to use its established network and an expansion of available frequencies to handle mobile phone signals, reports Bloomberg Businessweek. However, a proposal by FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski to limit the expansion of Dish Network’s frequencies would, according to Dish, prevent that expansion of services.

In a statement, the FCC claims that allowing Dish to expand would destroy the value of the “H block” of frequencies. The government owns this spectrum, and Congress has ordered the FCC to it auction off. The FCC claims that any interference with the H block would cost the government billions of dollars in revenue, money that’s meant to be used to build a nationwide emergency broadcast network.

A spokesman for Dish said the firm disagrees with the FCC’s assessment and is prepared to work with the entire five-person commission, which will make a final ruling on the application.

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