The first day of bidding in the Federal Communication Commission’s (FCC) Auction 103 ended its second round with $715,333,400 in bids, possibly indicating a lighter appetite for the latest millimeter wave spectrum to come to market.
Auction 103, which includes the upper 37 GHz, 39 GHz, and 47 GHz bands, is the largest auction of millimeter wave spectrum the FCC has conducted. The 28 GHz auction ended earlier this year after 176 rounds of bidding spread across 38 days, generating a total of $702,572,410 in provisionally winning bids. Auction 102, which included a lot more markets across the country in the 24 GHz band, raised a total of $2,024,268,941.
After Round 1 in Auction 103, spectrum was selling for just $0.000931 per MHz-POP compared to $0.001606 per MHz-POP at the same point in Auction 102. “With 3400 MHz of spectrum available and just 35 bidders competing, it will be a struggle for Auction 103 to reach anywhere near the disappointing $0.009112 per MHz-POP that Auction 102 reached after 91 rounds,” wrote Sasha Javid, COO at the Spectrum Consortium, in a blog.
Similar to Auctions 101 and 102, Javid, who was the chief data officer and legal advisor for the FCC’s Incentive Auction Task Force in 2016, is tracking the latest auction on his website.