AT&T, Dish Top AWS-3 Bidders

The FCC Friday released the names and amounts of the winning provisional bidders in the just-completed AWS-3 auction and it turns out that Dish ponied up more than Verizon, with both topped by AT&T.

The top provisional bidders for the 1,614 licenses auctioned were:

AT&T $18,189,285,000
Dish $13,327,423,700 (MoffettNathanson calculation)*
Verizon $10,430,017,000

T-Mobile bid $1,774,023,000 in the auction.

Dish's spectrum holdings had already gone up on the strength of the aggressive bidders in the AWS-3 auction, which turned out to include Dish to a degree that had not been anticipated.

The auction won't be official until those and other bidders make final payments, file the requisite paperwork and a comment period is opened for the public and any petitions challenging the auction. That means likely not until March at the earliest.

"At the conclusion of the FCC’s Auction 97, AT&T has successfully acquired licenses for a near nationwide contiguous 10x10 MHz block of high-quality AWS-3 spectrum," the company said in a statement. "As a result of the acquisition, AT&T now covers 96 percent of the U.S. population with high-value contiguous AWS-3 spectrum."

* Dish bid as American AWS-3Wireless I L.L.C; Northstar Wireless, LLC and SNR Wireless LicenseCo, which co-owned by individuals and some investors

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.