AT&T Announces FirstNet Bid
Friday, July 22, 2016 | Comments
AT&T announced that it submitted a bid for the First Responder Network Authority’s (FirstNet) national public-safety broadband network during an earnings conference call on July 21.

AT&T Chief Financial Officer (CFO) John Stevens mentioned the bid during his overview of the company’s financials for the second quarter of fiscal year 2016 but did not provide any further details such as potential partners.

“While we’re not going to elaborate, AT&T has applied to be a participant in the broadcast spectrum auction and has also submitted a bid in the FirstNet process that is currently underway.”

Stevens mentioned the FirstNet bid as one part of the company’s strategy to expand its spectrum portfolio. Prior to the deadline for submitting proposals, FirstNet executives highlighted the 700 MHz spectrum set aside for FirstNet, and the potential to use excess portions of that spectrum for commercial services, as an incentive for potential bidders.

“We have 20 megahertz of spectrum, beachfront property, that does not go against FCC caps,” FirstNet CEO Michael Poth said during a pre-proposal conference on the RFP in March.

AT&T is the third company to announce a FirstNet bid. Rivada Mercury, a partnership between Rivada Networks, Harris and others, and pdvWireless, a private wireless push-to-talk (PTT) carrier led by former Nextel Chairman Morgan O’Brien, both announced FirstNet bids in June.

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