This past week Google threw the gauntlet down, challenging the big boys of wireless to rethink how they operate their business. FCC is conducting one of the biggest spectrum auctions (700 MHz)allows the operators to enable new broadband like services.
Typically the Big Boys would purchase such spectrum and pretty much operate it with similar restrictions as we see in their other services. Google has been watching this space very closely for sometime now. Last week instead of lobbying for its advantage, they stepped into the conversation in a big way.
Google in its efforts to represent the common user offered a commitment of $ 4.6 Billion for the spectrum if all its requirements were met. These requirements clearly represent the interest of the common user. Google requires adoption of open platforms:
- Open applications: Consumers should be able to download and utilize any software applications, content, or services they desire;
- Open devices: Consumers should be able to utilize a handheld communications device with whatever wireless network they prefer;
- Open services: Third parties (resellers) should be able to acquire wireless services from a 700 MHz licensee on a wholesale basis, based on reasonably nondiscriminatory commercial terms; and
- Open networks: Third parties (like internet service providers) should be able to interconnect at any technically feasible point in a 700 MHz licensee’s wireless network.
In a very obvious way the other carriers have reacted negatively to this announcement. They would still like to keep things close in order for things to work in their favor.
I am personally really happy with this move and hoping that FCC listens to Google and makes the decision in the common user’s interest. On the other hand I do believe this is just the begining of things to come from Google.
What we are witnessing here is a historic rise of the GoogNet. Keep a eye on this one.