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Forbes: Will Apple Buy Wireless Spectrum? Not a Chance
Wednesday, September 12th, 2007 at 8:20 AM - by
There's not a chance that Apple will buy some of the wireless spectrum that is going up for auction in 2009, according to an editorial at Forbes. On Monday, reports surfaced that Apple had been investigating what it would take to participate in the auction, but Brian Caulfield reasoned that profit margins in running a wireless network were too small, and that FCC rules requiring networks to be open to competitors means that Apple could just as easily work with whomever does win the auction.
Mr. Caulfield cited analysts to back up his reasoning, including Endpoint Technologies President Roger Kay, who noted, "[You've got] billing issues, activation issues, quality of signal issues, all that kind of messy stuff that's out of your control even if you own it. Why would they want in?"
The article also pointed out that Apple CEO Steve Jobs lacks the kinds of contacts in the telephone market that allowed Apple to more easily enter the music industry.
He concluded with the idea that Apple's path of least resistance is to work with other companies, writing, "If Google made a serious play for the wireless spectrum, the search company could sell ads to subsidize a service that Apple's customers could connect to. Or Apple and Google could partner with an upstart carrier willing to take on a big chunk of debt to grab the spectrum. Either way, Jobs gets a tidy solution to a very messy problem."
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