Lawmakers on Friday pressed FCC officials on why the agency had squashed LightSquared’s plans to launch a wholesale LTE network so quickly, a stark reversal from earlier concerns that the agency has been too cozy with the company.
The lawmakers, mainly Republicans, on the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s subcommittee on oversight grilled the FCC officials over the fact that LightSquared’s 40 MHz of 1.6 GHz L-band spectrum is now essentially lying unused while the FCC urges broadcasters to give up spectrum for mobile broadband. The subcommittee’s chairman, Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.), said that was not “sound spectrum policy.”
via Lawmakers grill FCC officials on LightSquared’s fate – FierceWireless.
A bipartisan group of lawmakers wants the Federal Communications Commission to salvage LightSquared’s seemingly doomed plan to build a 4G LTE network by letting the company trade its spectrum for more suitable airwaves controlled by the Department of Defense.
via Lawmakers want FCC to bail out LightSquared with military spectrum | Ars Technica.
Senator Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) took to the Senate floor Tuesday to criticize the FCC over the waiver it initially issued to LightSquared, and over the documents it did not initially release about how that waiver was granted.
Grassley said the next step will be “asking some hard questions of the key FCC personnel who approved the LightSquared waiver.”
via Grassley Slams FCC on Senate Floor Over LightSquared – 2012-05-22 21:10:00 | Broadcasting & Cable.
Modern socialists learned years ago that you can effectively control large swaths of the economy through overwhelming regulation rather than outright nationalization. The President has become a master at this; health care, banking and energy are well on their way to becoming impotent vassals of the U.S. government. Another industry in which this phenomenon is unfolding is telecommuni–cations. With elections looming, the White House will make sure nothing happens in this area without clearance from Washington’s far-left liberals.
via Socialist Approach to Telecommunications – Forbes.
Wireless networks are for the bold, the lucky and the impossibly rich. And as LightSquared, the company that hoped to build a wholesale LTE network using airwaves once reserved for satellite signals, files for bankruptcy, I feel an I-told-you-so coming on. I was doubtful of LightSquared’s success from the beginning, but I was hoping I’d be proven wrong.
Instead I was right about LightSquared’s eventual failure, but wrong about the reasons. Maybe it would have failed for economic reasons if it had ever gotten off the ground, but before it got that far it fell victim to D.C. politics, spectrum warfare, and interests that don’t want more competition in the wireless industry.
via LightSquared’s bankruptcy is Washington’s failure too — Broadband News and Analysis.
LightSquared followed through with weekend rumors by filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection this afternoon, noting the move will give it “breathing room” to work through current regulatory challenges that prevent it from gaining access to its spectrum assets.
The company stated that despite the filing it expects to continue normal operations, including support of its satellite-based offering that serves public safety, emergency response, government and military users.
Despite recent upheaval amongst its leadership, the company said it expects its current management lineup will remain intact during the bankruptcy proceedings. Reports had indicated that current financial backer, Philip Falcone, has also been asked to step aside. Falcone’s Harbinger Capital Partners has been the largest financial backer of LightSquared’s attempt to build out a nationwide LTE network, which management had noted could require up to $14 billion in funding through the end of the decade.
via LightSquared files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection | | Mobile Technology | Wireless Broadband | Wireless Carriers | RCR U.S. Wireless NewsMobile Technology | Wireless Broadband | Wireless Carriers | RCR U.S. Wireless News.
Hedge-fund manager Philip Falcone’s LightSquared Inc. venture was preparing Sunday to file for bankruptcy protection after negotiations with lenders to avoid a potential debt default faltered, said people familiar with the matter.
LightSquared and its lenders still have until 5 p.m. Monday to reach a deal that would keep the wireless-networking company out of bankruptcy court, and there were some indications over the weekend that a final decision hadn’t yet been reached on its fate. Still, the two sides remained far apart, and people involved in the negotiations expected LightSquared to begin making bankruptcy preparations in earnest.
via LightSquared Moves Toward Bankruptcy Filing – WSJ.com.