3.65 GHz Licensees – Define Protection Zones!

Licensees in the 3.65 GHz band have until August 7 to define grandfathered protection zones around 3650-3700 MHz base stations that were registered as of April 17, 2015, and placed in operation by April 17, 2016, to protect themselves from future unlicensed Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) operations. However, the FCC recently released a Public Notice inviting comments on two Petitions for Rulemaking proposing to modify the rules governing the entire 3500-3700 MHz band. Instead of sharing the band only with unlicensed CBRS devices that are obligated to protect grandfathered systems using a spectrum access system (SAS), a Petition filed by T-Mobile would allow licensed/auctioned Priority Access License (PAL) licensees to co-exist with 3.65 GHz systems that establish grandfathered rights, an option the FCC had originally rejected. A Petition for Rulemaking filed by CTIA has requested more limited rule changes. EWA suspects that the number of grandfathered protection filings it receives by August 7 will influence the FCC’s decisions in response to T-Mobile and CTIA’s filings. EWA encourages those that are entitled to file for and have a need to secure protection zones, to do so. (GN 12-354; DA 17-340; DA 17-609).