FCC’s Wheeler: Auction Will Light Candle Under Mobile

FCC chairman Tom Wheeler marked the launch of the FCC's spectrum auction Tuesday (March 29) with a shout out to everybody concerned from broadcasters to wireless companies to staffers past and present, but the lead was focused on the broadband future he sees the auction as fueling.

“In just a few hours, we mark the beginning of the world’s first Incentive Auction, which will align the use of the public airwaves to meet America’s 21st century spectrum needs," he said in a statement "If broadband Internet service is an engine for economic growth, then mobile broadband has been its booster rocket, creating a platform for innovation, competition and new markets. The Incentive Auction promises to free up more capacity to meet Americans’ skyrocketing demand for wireless data while preserving the valuable service that broadcast TV stations provide to their communities."

The chairman then rolled the credits on the auction, sounding like someone relieved that the big day had finally come.

“As we get on with the business of conducting the auction, I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge the many people whose leadership helped get it off the ground. Thanks to Congress, which had the foresight to authorize this auction. Thanks to my predecessors and colleagues here at the Commission for their thoughtful deliberation on all of the key decisions made during the last four years. And my sincere thanks to the men and women of our world-class Incentive Auction team–today is a testament to the great work they do every day in service to the American people.”

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.