5G may expand into 12.7GHz-13.25GHz next

A number of top officials in the Biden administration are working to develop a unified and cohesive national spectrum strategy, which could be released within the next few months.

A big part of that strategy will involve allocating more spectrum for 5G. And already the FCC’s chairwoman said she’s eying the 12.7GHz-13.25GHz spectrum band as a possible location for the agency’s next big spectrum push.

However, FCC Chairwoman Jessica Rosenworcel warned that “repurposing spectrum is not for the faint of heart.” She explained that the growth of wireless communications in general – both among commercial and federal users – has put huge demands on the nation’s finite spectrum resources. Thus, it’s unclear when the 12.7GHz-13.25GHz spectrum band might be released for 5G, how it might be released to commercial users, and what types of stipulations might be imposed on operations in the band.

The fact that Biden administration officials are working on a national spectrum strategy, and that they’re flagging the 12.7GHz-13.25GHz band as a location of interest, could indicate movement in 5G spectrum policy in general. That’s important considering the FCC has no additional 5G spectrum auctions planned following a blizzard of recent midband spectrum auctions – CBRS, C-band, 3.45GHz and 2.5GHz – that have collectively generated a total of more than $100 billion in revenues.

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