Spectrum Matters. And Senator Mark Warner, D-VA, will tell you why.
A recent opinion piece on the topic of why more efficient use of spectrum in the US is needed really stuck with me. However, this wasn’t a normal opinion piece, with a run-of-the-mill “technical analyst” (who, most of the time, are neither technical nor do they analyze), but Mark Warner, US Senator from Virginia and former co-founder of Nextel, explains in no uncertain terms why the process for licensing spectrum is taking so long to change even though it is universally recognized as immensely important to technological and economic progress.
He specifically talks about how difficult it is to free up (currently) government-reserved spectrum for commercial use–both in monetary terms (how much it would cost to relocate government services to use other spectrum bands), as well as fairness, as most companies that in spectrum auctions are the very few giants that already dominate the field, leaving virtually nothing for any smaller newcomer. I agree that it is indeed urgent that the United States quickly find a way to reform the distribution of spectrum usage, so that more efficient use can be made of our limited spectrum resources, enabling more and more companies and people to take advantage of these resources for the betterment of society through technological progress. Although this article is a little light on the technical details, but the perspective that it gives is wholly different–the view from the inside of Washington, and the reasons why it cannot move as adroitly as we would wish in loosening up spectrum allocation rules.