FCC studying wireless spectrum grab for channel 51

Broadcasters, already faced with an aggressive wireless industry pushing for big chunks of its over-the-air spectrum, are facing a narrower, more focused attack on a single channel--51--the highest remaining on the broadcast TV spectrum at 698 MHz.

To make their point, CTIA members met with Jim Schlichting, senior deputy chief and Margaret Weiner, chief of the Auctions and Spectrum Access Division of the Wireless Bureau of the FCC, which is now seeking comments on their request.

The channel 51 spectrum is adjacent to A Block spectrum in the 700 MHz range that wireless carriers purchased and the wireless industry, represented by the CTIA and the Rural Cellular Association (RCA) want the FCC to make broadcasters move off of it and "relocate to an alternate channel."

"While the 700 MHz spectrum in particular is ideally suited for innovative wireless broadband services, licensees in the A Block face technical challenges caused by the presence of broadcast TV services on Ch. 51," the petition to the FCC said.

Specifically, broadcasters are legally protected from interference caused by A Block wireless services.

For more:
- Television Broadcast has this story

Related articles:
Broadcasters band together on spectrum; wireless lobbies want channel 51
FCC waits on Congressional authorization for broadcast spectrum auction

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