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Cringely Calls Google 700MHz Bid A Feint

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Google doesn’t want to pay what could end up a $10 billion price tag for the 700MHz wireless spectrum. They just want to include conditions that benefit them for free.

Cringely Calls Google 700MHz Bid A Feint
Cringely Calls Google 700MHz Bid A Feint

As kids, there was always someone willing to suggest the group go do something that could get everyone in trouble. When everyone else is being punished, the big idea kid always seemed to be somewhere else.

Google wants to be the big idea kid, as Robert X. Cringely suggested in his breakdown of Google’s assault on the wireless spectrum. The search company has offered to bid the minimum price the FCC wants for the 700MHz spectrum, $4.6 billion, if the FCC will force all bidders to adhere to four principles of openness.

Cringely thinks words may be all Google has to offer in this deal:

This could be a fake, a head feint on Google’s part. By attempting to set these conditions on any eventual auction winner, Google is tacitly telling the mobile carriers that it really doesn’t intend to bid or doesn’t intend to bid above the $4.6 billion threshold. Emboldened by this the telcos, who are also arrogant and have a kind of reptilian craftiness, may decide to save their resources and only bid, say, $10 billion.

Personally I would be disappointed by this, since I’ve suggested Google has passionate aspirations toward upsetting the wireless industry’s apple cart by launching its own network. Cringely allowed for the possibility that Google could push the bidding well above $10 billion, which could induce projectile vomiting in the boardrooms of the big four wireless companies.

That would make a great YouTube video. But Cringely thinks Google wouldn’t have tried setting the conditions it proposed in the first place if they actually intended to win the bidding. If they win they can do whatever they like as far as open access goes on 700MHz.

Cringely Calls Google 700MHz Bid A Feint
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  • http://greenspeak.org bj

    Harold Feld, Om Malik, and others who have been involved in Telecomm Policy Matters on a daily basis have quite a different take on this than Cringely does.

    http://www.wetmachine.com/totsf/item/854

    http://gigaom.com/2007/07/20/google-will-bid-for-wireless-spectrum/