DISH Chairman Charlie Ergen discussed his company’s wireless plans in May at this year’s Connectivity Expo in Charlotte, North Carolina. On June 5 and 6, Ergen and representatives of DISH met with FCC Chairman Pai and his staff and later with Wireless Bureau. But that appears to have only whetted the FCC’s appetite for details about the networks that will be built out. The FCC has sent a letter to DISH Network inquiring about its plans to build out its wireless to meet its buildout obligations for its spectrum licenses
The query came, in part, because of failures by the company and its subsidiaries to meet interim construction deadlines for their FCC licenses in the AWS-4, Lower 700 MHz E Block, Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Service and the H Block.
“I am contacting you to request updates and more detailed information on your buildout plans for the 53 megahertz of low- and mid-band spectrum that is apparently lying fallow in these bands,” wrote Donald K. Stockdale, Jr., chief of the FCC’s Wireless Telecommunications Bureau.
The Commission wanted to know about the challenges DISH faces in constructing the network by 2020 and how they may be overcome. In particular, DISH was asked to divulge its technology selection, vendor selection, equipment acquisition, system engineering, site acquisition, equipment testing, and advertisement of service and deployment to customers.
“How will each spectrum license independently be constructed to meet the service requirement?” Stockdale wrote. “Will each and every spectrum band be deployed at each base station? If not, how do you plan to demonstrate that you have met the buildout requirement for each license in each band??”
The FCC asked whether chip sets and developer kits that support the H Block would be available in time to offer customer equipment by April 2022? And whether the architecture for the phase 1 IoT network will need any rule waivers.