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LightSquared's Phil Falcone talks to CNBC, airs his feud with Verizon and AT&T (video)

Joseph Volpe, @jrvolpe
August 4, 2011
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Time to call in the wireless waahmbulance. LightSquared's billionaire backer Phil Falcone made his television debut on CNBC's Power Lunch to cry foul at the behind-the-scenes lobbying drama that could put the brakes on his 4G dreams. The hedge fund manager pointed his finger at AT&T and Verizon, claiming both are trying to "stomp out innovation" and competition by working in cahoots with the Save Our GPS Coalition. The soon-to-launch LTE network continues to encounter significant opposition from the group, as its tests have shown LightSquared's planned 40,000 stations will transmit signals "up to 800 billion times" more powerful than low-powered GPS, effectively blocking it out. Falcone insists that all parties involved knew of the potential interference issues back in 2003, when the FCC first mandated the network's build-out, and promises a switch to the company's lower block of spectrum will remedy 99 percent of the problem. Whichever side of this he said / they said brouhaha you believe, one thing's for sure -- the 4G race is getting pretty ugly.





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