The Spectrum Bunny is Working Hard

At the spectrum event in Washington today, NTIA made a very welcome announcement:

Keeping with the “spectrum day” theme in Washington, National Telecommunications & Information Administration chief Lawrence Strickling said Thursday NTIA has turned up 115 MHz of spectrum from government users that can be reclaimed for wireless broadband use.

The spectrum in question is currently assigned to NOAA and DoD for weather satellites and Naval radar. The US lags behind the rest of the world in spectrum releases for mobile broadband largely because our government is the biggest spectrum hoarder in the world, so it should come as no surprise that this 115 MHz all comes from government allocations. Getting government to release spectrum that’s been allocated to the various agencies and isn’t heavily used is challenging, of course, in part because government doesn’t respond to the kinds of financial incentives that motivate industry. But this is clearly a step in the right direction.