ITIF Urges FCC to Make L-Band Available for 5G

December 9, 2019

WASHINGTON—The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation (ITIF), the world’s leading think tank for science and technology policy, today urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to take steps to make L-Band spectrum available for 5G services. ITIF released the following statement from Director of Broadband and Spectrum Policy Doug Brake:

There is a desperate need to quickly make additional mid-band spectrum available for 5G use in the United States. After losing precious time dithering over a private sale or public auction of C-band spectrum, the FCC must not let another mid-band opportunity languish.

The December 6 letter from the National Telecommunications and Information Administration (NTIA) regarding Ligado’s license modification comes after years of careful study of the use of this valuable L-Band spectrum. Hopefully this letter can finally prompt the FCC to bring productive closure to this issue.

NTIA’s letter appears to lack new substance responsive to the numerous steps Ligado has taken to protect adjacent GPS services. What’s worse, following NTIA’s recommendation could also set a dangerous precedent of defining harmful interference with the absurd 1 dB standard, which would have disastrous implications for current and future spectrum bands.

Chairman Pai should demonstrate the FCC’s independence and take decisive action to free up this spectrum for more productive use.