Evaluating the Effects of FCC Spectrum Transactions - Liberty Puerto Rico November 10, 2023 12:30

Spektrum Metrics produces a weekly Spectrum Transactions Summary email that details the transactions that were filed that week by wireless carriers at the FCC.  Referring to this recent Transactions Summary, I am going to use Spektrum Metrics' Web Spectrum Viewer to investigate the effect of a series of transactions between Liberty and Claro, focused in the US Virgin Islands.  In the Transaction Summary email we link the FCC maps for all of the transactions where the licenses are disaggregated.  This can be seen in the transaction where part of a 700MHz spectrum license is being assigned from Claro to Liberty.  In this case, the 700MHz A block license includes Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.  The assignment application is only asking for the US Virgin Island license areas (blue) to be transferred to Liberty.


To evaluate the effects of this transaction I will use the Web Spectrum Viewer to highlight the spectrum ownership changes for each island.  First looking at the 700MHz spectrum.  Claro's existing spectrum is indicated with PRT and Liberty's spectrum is indicated with LIB.  Acquiring Claro's 700MHz A block will increase Liberty's NR Band 12 Uplink and Downlink from 10MHz to 15MHz.   This will add approximately 120 Mbps to their uplink and downlink speeds.

US Virgin Islands - 700MHz Spectrum Ownership:

Looking at the AWS1 and AWS3 transactions, Liberty will expand their NR Band 66 channels size in two areas.  First, the combination of AWS1 B and C block will provide 1 - 15MHz channel and the AWS3 G and H block combination will provide a new 10MHz channel in NR Band 66.  The purchase of Claro's AWS/AWS3 spectrum increases Virgin's NR Band 66 spectrum from 15MHz to 35MHz.  This spectrum falls into 3 different channels for carrier aggregation.

US Virgin Islands - AWS1/AWS3 Spectrum Ownership:

I will take one addition look at the AWS3 and AWS4 spectrum with the news that Dish is selling its Puerto Rico and US Virgin Islands spectrum to Liberty.  With the Dish AWS-3 I block and the AWS-4 spectrum, Liberty will have a contagious block of 45MHz of spectrum in the NR Band 66 downlink.