Dish Seeks Waiver for Hybrid Terrestrial-Satellite Broadband


From this article.
Dish Seeks Waiver for Hybrid Terrestrial-Satellite Broadband Service - 2011-08-22 20:17:27 | Broadcasting & Cable

Dish Network Monday asked the FCC to consolidate the transfer of satellite licenses that came with Dish's purchase of TerreStar and DBSD out of bankruptcy earlier in 2011 and -- citing commission precedent -- asked for a waiver of the FCC's integrated service requirement so it can use the combined spectrum to offer terrestrial-only receivers as part of its planned hybrid terrestrial-satellite broadband service.

The FCC granted LightSquared a waiver for its hybrid broadband service in the wake of a National Broadband Plan conclusion that "gating" criteria, such as the integrated service mandate, have made it difficult to achieve the Commission's goals of a more efficient and flexible use of spectrum.

Like LightSquared, Dish wants to be able to provide both the hybrid satellite-terrestrial receivers, as well as terrestrial-only to those who do not want the satellite function. "Allowing TerreStar and Dish to provide single-mode terrestrial terminals to customers who have no need for satellite functions will achieve significant public benefits, and will do so by better serving the important, underlying policy," Dish told the FCC in its application, that policy goal being to promote broadband deployment.

In July, a judge approved Dish's purchase of TerreStar out of bankruptcy. Dish wants the commission to combine the new request with an earlier one for DBSD's S-Band licenses. Dish plans to combine the license to provide an integrated mobile, portable and fixed broadband network under a newly-created subsidiary, Gamma. It promises the FCC that if it gets the go-ahead, Dish will promise to meet build-out deadlines and provide rural service. Bridging the rural-digital divide is one of the FCC's public interest goals.
This is a great move that could provide wireless broadband to under served rural areas and not add to the spectrum crunch. Dish has a desire to provide broadband to rural markets and would deploy a service, although at a cost that many are unwilling to pay.