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Lower 700 MHz


Lower 700 MHz Service

Critical Message Recent Commission action has significantly revised the frequency allocations and service rules for the 700 MHz band. We are in the process of updating the information on this site to reflect these changes. Please refer to the FCC Report and Order and Further Notice of Proposed Rule Making (pdf) and Second Report and Order (pdf) for information regarding the revisions to the 700 MHz band and service rules.
Also, information on Auction 73, the 700 MHz Band auction, scheduled to begin January 24, 2008, is available on the Auctions webpage.

In 2002, the FCC reallocated the 698-746 MHz spectrum band (Lower 700 MHz Band) that had been allocated to television Channels 52-59. The recovery of the Lower 700 MHz Band will be made possible by the conversion of television broadcasting from the existing analog transmission system to a digital transmission system. Because the digital television (DTV) transmission system is more spectrally efficient than the analog system, less spectrum will be needed for broadcast television service after the transition to DTV on channels 2 - 51 is complete.

Auction 44 & Auction 49

Pursuant to Section 309(j)(14) of the Communications Act, the FCC is required to assign spectrum recovered from broadcast television using competitive bidding. On September 18, 2002, the FCC completed an initial auction of 740 licenses in the Lower 700 MHz band C and D blocks, or the 710-716/740-746 MHz and 716-722 MHz bands (Auction No. 44) raising (in net high bids) a total of $88,651,630 for the U.S. Treasury. 102 winning bidders won a total of 484 licenses in this auction. On June 13, 2003, the FCC completed an additional auction of 256 licenses in the Lower 700 MHz band C and D blocks (Auction No. 44) raising (in net high bids) a total of $56,815,960. In this auction, 35 winners won a total of 251 licenses. Auctions for the A, B, and E Blocks have not been scheduled.


Winning bidders must follow a series of steps in order to be granted their license(s). Once the auction is completed, the FCC issues a public notice announcing the winning bidders as well as instructions regarding down payments and submission of Form 601.
Service At A Glance
Lower 700 MHz
Licensees are permitted to provide fixed, mobile, and broadcast services. Possible uses of this spectrum include mobile and other digital new broadcast operations, fixed and mobile wireless commercial services (including FDD- and TDD-based services), as well as fixed and mobile wireless uses for private, internal radio needs.
Service RulesCFR, Parts 1, 27
Band Plan
Band(s)698-746 MHz
BlocksA, B, C, D, E
Block Size6 MHz (D,E), 12 MHz - paired (A,B,C)
Market Areas
  • 700 MHz MSA/RSAs
  • 700 MHz EAGs
  • Licensing
    ULS Radio Service Codes
    WZ - Lower 700 MHz
    8/27/2002 - 9/18/2002
    5/28/2003 - 6/13/2003
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    Last reviewed/updated on