09.16.10

Does AT&T care about the Genus phone?

Posted in Handheld, Operators, Regulatory, Services, Spectrum, TerreStar at 10:02 am by timfarrar

We’re told that TerreStar is planning to announce (tomorrow?) that the Genus phone will be released by AT&T next week. However, surprisingly enough, AT&T’s filing yesterday in response to the FCC’s NPRM/NOI on MSS spectrum, didn’t mention the Genus phone once. Not only that, but AT&T actually suggested that “rationalizing the MSS bands for terrestrial wireless use is a
good first step to implementing a comprehensive broadband spectrum strategy”, and supported the concept suggested in the NOI, that “there may be opportunities to ‘meet future [MSS] needs with less allocated spectrum in some or all of the bands.’”

Therefore the obvious question is whether AT&T cares about the success of the Genus phone, or instead would actually benefit from it failing, because it believes that the “2 GHz MSS band is a good target for the creation of new terrestrial mobile services”. Of course AT&T is a large company, and what is in the interests of AT&T at a corporate level may differ from the priorities of the staff working on the Genus launch. However, given the challenges that the Genus phone already faces, it is noteworthy that the project does not appear to enjoy much recognition or support when AT&T is setting out its strategic interests in the wireless business.

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