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Auction 41

Narrowband PCS

DateAuction 41 began on
 and closed on
Round 48, (See PN DA 01-2429)
Licenses8 Nationwide licenses will be offered
357 licenses will be offered (7 licenses in each of 51 Major Trading Areas (MTAs))
NW Channel 18: (940.65-940.75 MHz)
NW Channel 19: (901.3-901.35, 930.5-930.55 MHz)
NW Channel 20: (901.9-901.95, 930.75-930.8 MHz)
NW Channel 21: (901.5-901.55, 930-930.15 MHz)
NW Channel 22: (901.6-901.65, 930.15-930.3 MHz)
NW Channel 23: (901.45-901.5, 940.55-940.65 MHz)
NW Channel 24: (901.55-901.6, 940.3-940.4 MHz)
NW Channel 25: (901.85-901.9, 940.45-940.55 MHz)
MTA Channel 26: (901.35-901.4 MHz)
MTA Channel 27: (901.4-901.45 MHz)
MTA Channel 28: (940.4-940.45 MHz)
MTA Channel 29: (901.95-902.0, 930.8-930.85 MHz)
MTA Channel 30: (901.65-901.7, 930.3-930.4 MHz)
MTA Channel 31: (901.7-901.75, 930.85-931 MHz)
MTA Channel 32: (901.8375-901.85, 940.9-941 MHz)
See table below.

Total bandwidth: 1.8625 MHz (1862.5 kHz)
Winning Bidders5 bidders won 317 licenses
Bidding Days8
Qualified Bidders9
Licenses Won317
Licenses Held By FCC48
Net Revenues
Net Bids$8,285,036.00
Gross Bids$11,013,915.00
Narrowband PCS channels 29, 31, and 32 in MTA002 (Los Angeles-San Diego) will be available subject to protection of incumbent licenses held by Paging Systems, Inc. under call signs WPOI469, WPOI470, WPOI471, and WPOI472. See In the Matter of License Communications Services, Inc. et al., Memorandum Opinion and Order, 12 FCC Rcd 16,436 (1998).
The Narrowband PCS Auction is scheduled to begin October 3, 2001. General information and associated licensing parameters are provided below. Specific information regarding this auction will be announced by public notice.

Key Dates

Pre-Auction Seminar
Form 175 (Short Form) Application Filing Deadline
8/24/2001; 6:00 pm ET
Upfront Payments Deadline
9/13/2001; 6:00 pm ET
Mock Auction
Auction Start
Auction Closed

Licenses Offered

The Commission has previously conducted two auctions for narrowband PCS licenses. As a result of these two auctions, ten nationwide narrowband PCS licenses and six regional narrowband PCS licenses in five different regions (totaling 30 regional licenses) have been granted. The remaining channels currently allocated to be licensed as narrowband PCS are found in the 901-902, 930-931, and 940-941 MHz bands.
Auction No. 41 will offer 365 Personal Communications Service (PCS) licenses in the 900 MHz band ("narrowband PCS"). Eight licenses will be offered on a nationwide basis and seven licenses will be offered in each of 51 Major Trading Areas (MTAs), for a total of 357 MTA licenses.


18100 kHz unpaired
1950 kHz/50 kHz paired
2050 kHz/50 kHz paired
2150 kHz /150 kHz paired
2250 kHz /150 kHz paired
2350 kHz/100 kHz paired
2450 kHz/100 kHz paired
2550 kHz/100 kHz paired
2650 kHz unpaired
2750 kHz unpaired
2850 kHz unpaired
2950 kHz/50 kHz paired
3050 kHz/100 kHz paired
3150 kHz/150 kHz paired
3212.5 kHz/100 kHz paired

Permissible Operations

The Commission broadly defines PCS as mobile and fixed communications offerings that serve individuals and businesses, and can be integrated with a variety of competing networks.

License Period

CMRS licenses will be issued for a ten-year term from the initial license grant date.
Nationwide licensees are required to construct base stations that provide coverage to a composite area of 750,000 square kilometers or serve 37.5 percent of the U.S. population within five years of initial license grant; and, construct base stations that provide coverage to a composite area of 1,500,000 square kilometers or serve 75 percent of the U.S. population within ten years of initial license grant.
MTA licensees are required to provide coverage to a composite area of 75,000 square kilometers or 25 percent of the geographic area, or serve 37.5 percent of the population of the service area within five years of the initial license grant; and, construct base stations that provide coverage to a composite area of 150,000 square kilometers or 50 percent of the geographic area, or serve 75 percent of the population of the service area within ten years of the initial license grant.
In the alternative, nationwide or MTA licensees may provide substantial service to the licensed area within ten years of license grant.

Tribal Land Bidding Credits

A winning bidder that intends to use its license(s) to deploy facilities and provide services to federally-recognized tribal lands that are unserved by any telecommunications carrier or that have a telephone service penetration rate equal to or below 70 percent is eligible to receive a tribal land bidding credit as set forth in 47 C.F.R. § 1.2107 and 1.2110(f). A tribal land bidding credit is in addition to, and separate from, any other bidding credit for which a winning bidder may qualify.
Unlike other bidding credits that are requested prior to the auction, a winning bidder applies for the tribal land bidding credit after winning the auction when it files its long-form application (FCC Form 601). In order for a winning bidder to be awarded a tribal land bidding credit, it must provide specific certifications regarding the servicing of tribal lands and is subject to specific performance criteria as set forth in 47 C.F.R. § 1.2110(f).
Additional information on the tribal land bidding credit, including how the amount of the credit is calculated, can be found on the Tribal Land Bidding Credits page.

Bidding Credits

Bidding credits are available to small businesses or consortia thereof, (as defined in 47 C.F.R. § 1.2110(c) and 22.217(a)). A bidding credit represents the amount by which a bidder's winning bids are discounted. The size of the bidding credit depends on the average annual gross revenues for the preceding three years of the bidder, its affiliates, its controlling interests, and the affiliates of its controlling interests: Bidding credits are not cumulative. A qualifying applicant receives either the 25 percent or the 35 percent bidding credit, but not both.


There is one incumbent licensee already licensed and operating on channels 29, 31, and 32 in MTA002 (Los Angeles –San Diego). Individuals winning licenses for these channels must protect the incumbent from harmful interference and therefore this may restrict their ability to use the above-referenced channels in portions of MTA002.

Licensing Rules

  1. No spectrum or channel aggregation cap
  2. No eligibility restrictions
  3. Partitioning and/or disaggregation permitted at any time
  4. Part 1 unjust enrichment provisions apply

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