Haven’t posted much, as I’ve been busier than I can imagine, and a big computer crash in our office from last weekend into Tuesday put me waaaayy behind.
Fortunately, my good buddies and folks who actually deploy stuff (as opposedto us lawyers) Sascha Meinrath and Steve Ronan (both involved with CTCNet, as well as Sascha’s role with CUWN have sounded the alarm for me.
As some of you may recall from my article last march, we won access to a nice little slice of spectrum for non-exclusive use in the 3650-3700 band. A number of the big boys, like Intel, who have bet heavily on WiMax, tried to convince the Commission to take it away from us.
So I just filed an Opposition that says (a) the argument that you need to be Intel to make useful technology for wireless is stupid. CUWN can do it, and do it open source. If Intel wants to sit this one out because they don’t think they can make money in this band, fine. (b) WiMax is a nice technology, but not every band needs to be WiMax compatible. Better not to have all our eggs in one basket, huh? (c) The rest of the comments boil down to “Don’t sell the bike shop Orville, it’ll never fly!” If it fails, the Commission can take the spectrum back and give it to the WiMax crowd, but give the rest of us a chance.
Happily for me, Cisco also filed on our side and in opposition to Intel. Their cmments boil down to – if Intel thinks they can make money here given all the incumbents that need protecting, they’re nuts. We love WiMax, but we’d rather make money selling equipment to WISPs who can use this for backhaul than try to make exclusive licensing and WiMax work here.
The fact that Cisco weighed in resolves my one worry. A lot of staff at the Commission still aren’t convinced that open source folks like CUWN and feisty little entreprenuerial folks with proprietary solutions can really develop a band of spectrum. So they are always looking to see if any of the established industry players are willing to invest in the band. Frankly, if it were just CUWN v. Intel, staff would start to wonder if they had really done the right thing and I would have a much harder time keeping the rules. But if Cisco says they can make money in this band under these rules (and that other rules would be much worse), then staff are much more likely to decde they did the right thing the first time and recommend the Commission Deny the Petitions.
I hope they do anyway.
Stay tuned . . . .