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Sprint Nextel looks to 900 MHz band to ease iDEN capacity constrains

WASHINGTON—Facing an iDEN capacity constraint as it reconfigures its 800 MHz systems, Sprint Nextel Corp. asked the Federal Communications Commission for authorization to temporarily move its iDEN operations in 13 markets along the Eastern Seaboard to the 900 MHz band.

The 900 MHz band is used for private wireless and unlicensed operations. It is normally licensed on a site-by-site basis, but Sprint Nextel’s request is for use in 13 basic trading areas encompassing Boston; Baltimore; Washington, D.C.; New York; Philadelphia; Melbourne, Fort Myers, Jacksonville, Lakeland, Miami and Tampa, Fla.; New Haven, Conn.; and Atlantic City, N.J.

“Sprint Nextel has filed to receive special temporary authority in a number of markets around the country regarding use of green space at 900 MHz. Our filings with the FCC are consistent with policy set forth by the commission in the 800 MHz decision,” said Lawrence Krevor, Sprint Nextel’s government affairs vice president of spectrum.

The nation’s third-largest mobile-phone carrier has previously said it would need to move some operations temporarily to the 900 MHz band. In a series of filings, Sprint Nextel identified the markets where it needs to do this. The carrier said it needs to keep the operations in the 900 MHz band for up to six months.

Sprint Nextel said it would not interfere with private-wireless, site-based licensees that are currently in the 900 MHz band.


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