I heard loads of speculation about this and now it seems to be a reality as Google has tossed their hat into the ring and offered up a $4.6 billion bid in the next round of the Wireless Spectrum auction... any ideas as to their plans? According to a report inn the Washington Post, Google sent a letter to the U.S. Federal Communications Commission chairman informing him that the company will commit a minimum of US$4.6 billion toward the auction, but only if certain conditions are met. Specifically, Google wants to encourage an open broadband platform... WOW!
It's the last part of that statement that seems to be the real issue here... "We're putting consumers' interests first and putting our money where our principles are -- to the tune of $4.6 billion," Chris Sacca, head of special initiatives at Google, wrote on the company's public policy blog. (Source) - See also http://www.fcc.gov/ & http://googlepublicpolicy
The following are some details from the Gogole Blog post concerning the bid:
Specifically, we encouraged the FCC to require the adoption of four types of "open" platforms as part of the auction:
- Open applications: consumers should be able to download and utilize any software applications, content, or services they desire;
- Open devices: consumers should be able to utilize their handheld communications device with whatever wireless network they prefer;
- Open services: third parties (resellers) should be able to acquire wireless services from a 700 MHz licensee on a wholesale basis, based on reasonably nondiscriminatory commercial terms; and
- Open networks: third parties (like Internet service providers) should be able to interconnect at any technically feasible point in a 700 MHz licensee's wireless network