Federal regulators are working on a plan to auction nearly 16,000 licenses for wireless infrastructure links in the 37 GHz and 39 GHz bands.

The Federal Communications Commission, according to an internal document obtained by RCR, believes demand will increase for point-to-point operations in major markets where personal communications services and other commercial wireless systems are built.

“The recent surge of applications for point-to-point licenses in the adjacent 39 GHz band is indicative of the interest in using this region of the spectrum to provide for infrastructure facilities,” said the FCC.

Licenses would cover basic trading areas. However, the size of the bidding credit for small businesses and the treatment of pending 39 GHz applications could prove controversial.

The 37 GHz band channeling plan would include 14 50-megahertz channel block pairs, with a 700-megahertz separation between the transmit and receive channels, and four 50-megahertz unpaired channel blocks.

The same channeling scheme would be used in the 39 GHz band. Existing facilities would be relicensed by individual links and grandfathered. Technical rules governing equipment installed after January 1998 in the grandfathered links would be bolstered.

The FCC said it would stop accepting new applications for 39 GHz licenses and that pending applications will be put on hold pending the outcome of the rulemaking.

Ownership in each BTA license would be limited to no more than four of the 28 paired channels and two of the four unpaired channels.

AirTouch sells Teletrac

AirTouch Communications Inc. announced it has agreed to sell the assets of its vehicle location business to a new company named Teletrac Inc.

AirTouch provides corporate fleet and stolen vehicle tracking services under the name AirTouch Teletrac in the cities of Chicago, Dallas/Fort Worth, Detroit, Houston, Los Angeles and Miami. The sale, which is subject to regulatory approvals, is expected to close by the end of the year, AirTouch said.

Teletrac Inc., based in Leawood, Kan., was recently formed for the purpose of acquiring the assets of AirTouch Teletrac. The management team formerly ran Premiere Paging, a public paging company that was sold to USA Mobile Communications in December 1994.


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