The news that Verizon had struck a deal to buy up AWS spectrum from the cable companies may have come as a big surprise to a lot of industry followers, but Sidecut Reports readers have been primed for something like this for a long time. You can search back through the archives — but in 2009, we asked if there was a looming LTE spectrum crisis; and earlier this year we told you that Verizon’s spectrum position was going to come under strain soon. Though Verizon folks had told us privately this spring that they thought they had enough spectrum for the foreseeable future, apparently things have changed.
Fast forward to December, 2011, and with a year of LTE and almost a year of iPhone sales under its belt, Verizon did what it had to do: Find more spectrum, fast. While all the details aren’t yet out and while there is certain to be great scrutiny of the deal from the Feds thanks to the recent AT&T-T-Mobile tussles, my early take is that this deal should sail through, giving Verizon some breathing room.
We still have a standing request for a sit-down interview with any Verizon exec who wants to talk spectrum, bandwidth efficiency, and what that means for the future — but maybe we’ll hear more about all that stuff when Verizon goes through the expected government hearings necessary before this deal is approved.