Washington D.C. – The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has reached arrangements with Industry Canada and Mexico's Secretariat of Communications and Transportation (SCT) for sharing commercial wireless broadband spectrum in the 700 MHz band along the U.S.-Canadian and U.S.- Mexican border areas. The FCC also reached an arrangement with Industry Canada for sharing spectrum in the 800 MHz band. These actions will help support commercial broadband services and public safety mission-critical voice communications.
"These arrangements will unleash investment and benefit consumers near the borders by enabling the rollout of 4G wireless broadband service and advanced systems for critical public safety and emergency response communications," Chairman Julius Genachowski stated after signing the documents. "I appreciate the commitment and dedicated efforts of everyone who has been involved in these discussions to ensure that we are making the most effective use of this valuable spectrum."
The technical sharing principles reached on the 700 MHz band will facilitate the deployment of mobile wireless broadband systems near the U.S.-Canadian and U.S.-Mexican borders and will provide consumers in these areas with advanced opportunities for 4G high-speed mobile broadband access. Under the arrangements, licensees on both sides of the borders will have greater access to the 698-758 MHz and 776-788 MHz bands.
The technical sharing principles reached on 800 MHz will pave the way for completion of 800 MHz rebanding by U.S. public safety and commercial licensees operating along the U.S.-Canadian border. The FCC ordered rebanding to alleviate interference to public safety licensees in the band caused by commercial cellular licensees. The arrangement specifies (1) how primary channels will be allotted between the United States and Canada, (2) the technical parameters for operation on these channels within 140 kilometers (87 miles) of the common border, and (3) a schedule for transitioning facilities from the channels needed by the U.S. to complete rebanding along the U.S.-Canadian border.