C Spire Sues AT&T Over 3GPP Use – Blocks Others Utilization of the 700Mhz Band

Posted by at 11:53 am on June 4, 2012

Regional wireless service provider C Spire has filed an antitrust lawsuit with the US federal court against AT&T. C Spire claims that AT&T is unfairly using its market influence to prevent the small provider from full utilization of the 700Mhz spectrum that it has rights to.

The root of the lawsuit charges that AT&T induced the Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) to create a new Band after the public auction of the 700MHz spectrum in 2008. The new band prevented small carriers’ hardware that connected with the different band from roaming on AT&T’s new 4G network. AT&T contends that the new band was created to avoid television interference on channels that broadcast very close in the spectrum.

In short, C Spire claims that AT&T’s moves have rendered its purchase of the 700MHz spectrum worthless, as it cannot purchase devices from suppliers, who favor the other end of the 700MHZ block. The claim also states that AT&T conspired with Motorola and Qualcomm to insure that all of the regional carriers wouldn’t have access to the newest devices.

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