Also, the commission late Wednesday voted to free up 40MHz of satellite spectrum for land-based mobile broadband service. The commission, outside public meeting, voted to free up the AWS-4 band, which owner Dish Network plans to use to build an LTE network by 2016, and the FCC also approved a notice of proposed rulemaking to auction the so-called H Block in the 1900MHz PCS spectrum in 2013.
Sprint Nextel has expressed interest in the H block but had long expressed concerns that mobile broadband in the nearby AWS-4 spectrum would cause interference. The FCC made a "balanced and equitable decision" to deal with the AWS-4 and H blocks, Sprint said in a statement.
Grant Gross covers technology and telecom policy in the U.S. government for The IDG News Service. Follow Grant on Twitter at GrantGross. Grant's e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.