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Ligado Networks (formerly LightSquared)


JimBob
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The 2012 cancellation of the spectrum hosting / network sharing deal between Sprint and LightSquared was quite disappointing.  It would have brought Sprint at least $15 billion in revenue.

 

http://newsroom.sprint.com/news-releases/sprint-nextel-and-lightsquared-announce-spectrum-hosting-and-network-services-agreement.htm

 

However, LightSquared has recently emerged from bankruptcy and GPS fights as Ligado networks.  They still have the L-band spectrum.  Is there technically still a possibility of a new deal with Sprint? :)

 

http://www.fiercewireless.com/story/lightsquared-rebrands-ligado-networks-spectrum-plans-remain-cloudy/2016-02-09

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This company holds what, 68MHz of spectrum? They need what, 2x10MHz guard bands just on the GPS side? So could still get 20x20 chunk out of these holdings for deployment.

 

There is so much spectrum out there that needs to be used up between this company and Dish. :-P

 

Doesn't Charlie Ergen still have his finger wrapped around this company right now? It could be a cheap buy or cheap stake holding for Sprint/Softbank. Could be some great build out spectrum on a dual band antenna with B26. It already has an LTE band allocated to it, Band 24.

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I don't think they can compete on the cellphone/tablet space. The space is already crowded. They might go after the IoT crowd.

 

Speaking of Dish, I still think that Sprint can do a spectrum swap with Dish to beef up Sprint's mid band holdings for Sprint's EBS. Then take the rest of their Dish's holdings and EBS and offer LTE home broadband hosted on Sprint's network. 

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I don't think they can compete on the cellphone/tablet space. The space is already crowded. They might go after the IoT crowd.

 

Speaking of Dish, I still think that Sprint can do a spectrum swap with Dish to beef up Sprint's mid band holdings for Sprint's EBS. Then take the rest of their Dish's holdings and EBS and offer LTE home broadband hosted on Sprint's network. 

Spectrum swap?  Why?  Dish's spectrum currently isn't part of any band except for 700MHz.  No phones support their spectrum except for 700MHz.  Then that is just extra money for additional antennas that can be used for deploying B41.  Swapping 2.5GHz for AWS4/PCS H-Block would just be a bad idea and not really give Sprint anything.

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Spectrum swap?  Why?  Dish's spectrum currently isn't part of any band except for 700MHz.  No phones support their spectrum except for 700MHz.  Then that is just extra money for additional antennas that can be used for deploying B41.  Swapping 2.5GHz for AWS4/PCS H-Block would just be a bad idea and not really give Sprint anything.

 

Band 66 is the first asymmetric paired band completed in 3GPP, and aligns with the recognition that consumer demand for downlink capacity is significantly greater than uplink. Band 66 pairs 70 MHz of uplink spectrum with 90 MHz of downlink spectrum including AWS-1 (1710-1755 MHz and 2110-2155 MHz), the recently auctioned AWS-3 paired spectrum (1755-1780 MHz and 2155-2180 MHz), and DISH’s upper AWS-4 spectrum (2180-2200 MHz) approved for use as downlink.

In addition to the adoption of Band 66, 3GPP approved the completion of a feasibility study and the initiation of a Work Item for a new band, which includes DISH’s remaining AWS-4 spectrum and its H Block. The new band pairs 15 MHz of AWS-3 uplink (1695-1710 MHz) and 25 MHz of downlink comprised of DISH’s lower AWS-4 spectrum (2000-2020 MHz) and H Block (1995-2000 MHz). The FCC has granted DISH the flexibility to convert the lower portion of AWS-4 to downlink from its legacy uplink designation.

 

http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20151210006299/en/3GPP-Band-Plan-Integrates-DISH-Spectrum

 

As you can see, Band 66 is a super set of AWS-1, AWS and the AWS-4 downlink. It is a standardized band, not a boutique band. You're thinking of the new proposed band which is 1995-2020 as the downlink and 1695-1710 as the uplink. That will be a boutique band. I believe that band 66 will be an attractive band for Sprint.

 

I have no idea why Dish bid and won H Block. They paid $1.53B for it and are not going to use the uplink. If Sprint had gotten it they could have paired with with the 1900 Mhz G Block for a nice 10x10 block.

Edited by bigsnake49
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Why would sprint care about 20MHz of DL only Band 66?  2200MHz isn't much better than 2500MHz. 

 

Any of the other options, there still is no band class, and any option would require brand new tower deployments.  Antenneas, RRUs, etc.  Billions of dollars. Even H Block would require new gear on the towers, still isn't part of a band class, and does not mean that they could automatically do 10x10MHz.  Market like mine would still need to be two 5x5 carriers. 

 

That money is just better spent into deploying 2.5GHz and not yet another band that won't offer any benefits over the current spectrum. Also use that money to buy spectrum on the private market that aligns with their holdings.

 

Now, if Dish had PCS A-F holdings or SMR/CLR holdings, then a spectrum swap makes sense.  Sprint could deploy the new spectrum with software pushes. 

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Band 66 is the first asymmetric paired band completed in 3GPP, and aligns with the recognition that consumer demand for downlink capacity is significantly greater than uplink. Band 66 pairs 70 MHz of uplink spectrum with 90 MHz of downlink spectrum including AWS-1 (1710-1755 MHz and 2110-2155 MHz), the recently auctioned AWS-3 paired spectrum (1755-1780 MHz and 2155-2180 MHz), and DISH’s upper AWS-4 spectrum (2180-2200 MHz) approved for use as downlink.

 

Technically, you can call the FDD in band 66 "asymmetric."  But I doubt it will be utilized that way.  The upper block of AWS-4 spectrum that got rolled into the mix as supplemental downlink will require at least 2x CA -- pretty much just like unpaired Lower 700 MHz in band 29.  And with the additional hardware requirements put on handsets for 2x CA, the supplemental downlink might as well be thought of as a separate band.

 

AJ

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