Wireless Industry

News & Analysis as of

Seventh Circuit Upholds Dismissal of Text Messaging Price-Fixing Claims

On Thursday, April 9, 2015, the Seventh Circuit affirmed the district court’s grant of summary judgment for AT&T Mobility LLC, Verizon Wireless LLC, T-Mobile USA Inc. and Sprint Corp., in a text messaging price-fixing...more

The Other Shoe Has Dropped: CFPB Releases Report on Arbitration

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently released its long awaited Report to Congress on arbitration agreements in consumer financial contracts. The Report’s conclusion, and Director Richard Cordray’s remarks,...more

TracFone Files Supplement to Emergency Petition for FCC Preemption on 911 Fees

As noted in our prior update, in November 2014, the FCC Wireline Competition Bureau issued a Public Notice requesting industry comment on a Petition filed by TracFone Wireless regarding 911 fees charged to Lifeline...more

Oklahoma Commission Revises Universal Service Rules

On March 12, 2015, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission (OCC) adopted revisions to its rules relating to administration of federal and state universal service programs, including Lifeline. While the revisions generally consist...more

SEC Files Fraud Action Tied To Sale of Cellular Licensing

The sale of spectrum to operate cell phones can yield millions of dollars in profits. This notion was at the center of an action brought by the SEC against six individuals and eleven entities. Investors who purchased...more

Rating Agency Developments

On March 27, DBRS released its updated methodology for rating North American commercial mortgage-backed securities (CMBS). On March 27, Fitch released its updated criteria for analyzing U.S. wireless tower transactions....more

FCC Updates Network Outage Reporting Requirements

On March 30, 2015, the FCC issued a Notice of Proposed Rule Making, Second Report and Order, and Order on Reconsideration (“Order”). The Order updates the FCC’s “Part 4” network outage reporting rules to reflect technological...more

Alert: Cybersecurity Risk Management for Communications Companies

An industry-led committee advising the Federal Communications Commission ("FCC") on cybersecurity released its final report on best risk management practices tailored to each of five main industry segments—broadcasting,...more

Rating Agency Developments

Moody’s released its approach to rating securities backed by wireless towers....more

FCC Adopts Open Internet (Net Neutrality) Rules

The order classifies broadband Internet access as a telecommunications service. The Federal Communications Commission (FCC or Commission) today voted, by a 3-2 margin, to adopt rules designed to promote an open Internet...more

Landlord’s Checklist For Cell Tower Transfers

The Federal Communications Commission recently closed a spectrum auction that raised more than $41 billion. Among the companies making a large investment in the auction was Verizon. It reportedly spent $10.4 billion for this...more

"Congressional Investigations Highlight Risks for Companies Across Industries"

An examination of congressional investigations in 2014 reminds us that such investigations can strike an industry or company at any time. Irrespective of the subjects, the investigations typically share one or more of the...more

In SEP Assertion Cases, Apportionment Trumps Entire Market Rule - Ericsson, Inc. v. D-Link Sys. Inc., et al.

Ericsson, Inc. v. D-Link Sys. Inc., et al. - The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit addressed a spectrum of issues surrounding industry standards for electronic devices that wirelessly access the internet,...more

Mobile Wi-Fi Bumps Up Against NIMBY

Hey, What Happened to My Internet Connection? - In February 2013, a guest who stayed at the Gaylord Opryland Hotel and Convention Center in Nashville filed a complaint with the Federal Communications Commission,...more

High Court Reaffirms Local Government's Authority in Denials of Applications for Cell Towers

Decision Clarifies that Local Government’s Decision Need Not State Reasons if they are Contemporaneously Published Elsewhere - A local government need not state the reasons for its denial of a new cell-tower...more

Alert: FCC Seeks Comment on Complex Broadcast Incentive Auction Procedures

In a Public Notice approved in a 3–2 partisan vote, the Federal Communications Commission is asking for comment on the procedures that will govern the Broadcast Incentive Auction, currently scheduled for early 2016. The...more

Spain – Competition Authority orders 4G operators to give MVNOs access

Spain’s Competition Supervision Authority (CNMC), currently in charge of both competition and regulatory matters has ordered the main Mobile Network Operators (MNO) in Spain, namely Telefónica (Movistar), Vodafone and Orange,...more

Local Government, Industry Reps Mull Challenges to Section 6409(a)

BB&K Partner Gerard Lederer quoted by Telecommunications Reports Daily in coverage of webinar on wireless towers and the new FCC rules. Local government officials and those in the wireless industry are closely...more

The FTC’s Thoughts on Why “Unlimited Data” Shouldn’t Need Scare Quotes

On October 28, 2014, the United States Federal Trade Commission (FTC) sued AT&T’s mobile division in the Northern District of California (F.T.C. v. AT&T Mobility LLC, Case No._ [N.D. Cal., Oct. 28, 2014] “AT&T Mobility”). The...more

President Obama to FCC: Reclassify Broadband, Wireless to Title II Common Carrier Regulation; Wheeler "Asks For More Time"

President Obama released a statement on Monday that, if adopted, will have a significant effect on the way carriers, specifically small carriers offer broadband interconnect access services. The President called for the FCC...more

New FCC Rules Will Require New Approach to Siting of Wireless Facilities

The FCC adopted new rules at its Oct. 17 meeting that are likely to require changes in the way local governments respond to applications for siting wireless towers, and for adding antennas to, and modifying, existing...more

The FCC’s New Wireless Facility Rules

A reporter for Telecommunications Reports was one of the attendees of the Best Best & Krieger webinar “New FCC Rules Will Require New Approach to Siting of Wireless Facilities.” The free webinar on Nov. 5 was in response to...more

A Pending Supreme Court Case and an FCC Rulemaking May Impact How Local Planning Agencies Handle Wireless Facilities

As wireless towers and other facilities continue to sprout at a rapid pace, regulations that balance your community’s needs and those of wireless providers must keep up. Local governments and their planners should watch two...more

Are REITs a Viable Strategy for Communications Companies?

Windstream Holdings, Inc. recently announced plans to spin off its copper, fiber and other fixed real estate assets into an independent publicly traded real estate investment trust (REIT). Windstream received a private letter...more

Are You Secretly Running a Construction Business? State Law Says You Might Be!

Late last month, I spoke at a regional meeting of the Wireless Internet Service Providers Association, and many of the WISPs in attendance were surprised to learn that not only were they in the Internet service business, but...more

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