Last week, the Department of Justice approved Verizon’s pending AWS spectrum purchase from the cable companies, leaving the FCC as the lone holdout. FCC Chairman Julius Genachowski advised the committee to approve the deal, and today the committee voted to do just that.
The FCC did put some contingencies on the deal; Verizon will have to sell some spectrum to T-Mobile USA (though they already planned to do so) in addition to the swap agreement with Leap Wireless. Verizon has 45 days to agree to a spectrum swap/purchase deal with T-Mobile, and the company will also be required to meet various coverage standards in newly acquired regions at the 3 and 7 year post-purchase levels, guarantee certain roaming agreements, and disclose various updates on the impact to the company’s DSL service.
“This purchase represents a milestone in the industry and we appreciate the FCC’s diligent work to review and approve the transaction. We will work aggressively to ensure that we put this previously unused spectrum to use quickly to benefit customers.” – Dan Mead, President and CEO, Verizon Wireless