Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Telecentrs has WiMax plans

Telecentrs, a Latvian wireless internet provider, has plans to build out a WiMax network in the Riga area next year, based on Motorola's Wi4 technology. It just doesn't have any spectrum for this, not in the 3.5 to 3.6 GHz range that it needs.
This is the reason why Telecentrs has belatedly started a campaign to have some of competitor Unistars frequencies reallocated. The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission will decide on August 31 whether to extend Unistars frequency use rights in the 3.5 to 3.6 GHz spectrum. Telecentrs says that the allocation of six channels to Unistars is excessive and beyond the prudent and reasonable use of the spectrum. Trouble is, nobody has determined standards, short of doing nothing and letting the storks nest on your base station tower, as to what is reasonable use. The Electronic Communications Directorate certainly doesn't, even though they count towers and monitor technical compliance with frequencies, so they gave a clean bill of health to Unistars.
The only problem with all of this is that it can set a bad precedent (with non-existant or fuzzy benchmarks) for operators to pull frequency grabs every time a similar situation arises. If Telecentrs succeeds in persuading the regulator that the state can make some money auctioning off what it determines are superflously allocated frequencies, this could become a regular circus with dangerous incentives both for complainants (I didn't say whiners to be fair :) ) and for the government.

1 comment:

Solnyshok said...

Juris, what was the outcome of this? who has wimax spectrum in Latvia now?