The Spectrum Handbook

July 30, 2013 | By More

The Spectrum Handbook 2013 is now available and downloadable from this post. As a primer and a reference manual on wireless spectrum issues, the Spectrum Handbook has three objectives:

  1. To serve as a primer for explaining the complex issues around the use of electromagnetic spectrum;

  2. To analyze, from both an economic and a legal perspective, the regulatory processes being considered or underway to reallocate or change the use of spectrum bands and;

  3. To be a reference source for industry professionals.

Radio Spectrum Uses

Uses of Radio Spectrum (Source: GAO Spectrum Management)

From a macro perspective, regulators worldwide are currently reallocating spectrum from underutilized applications to the burgeoning mobile wireless broadband applications. Given the needs and importance of wireless broadband, from an economic and social perspective, this trend is likely unstoppable. The FCC is allocating both licensed spectrum, (including the broadcast incentive auction), and unlicensed spectrum, (including the 3.5 GHz and 5 GHz processes). Unlicensed share spectrum is one approach to minimize disruption from these reallocation efforts and expand utilization is the small, but significant spectrum sharing movement. Spectrum sharing is simultaneously proposing to improve spectral efficiency, and calling into question the need for licenses altogether.

As a result of the existing processes underway to improve the efficiency of spectrum allocation, along with new technologies that further improve efficiency, the extent of “spectrum crunch”, (i.e. the apparent lack of available spectrum), is poorly understood and hotly debated. Summit Ridge Group does not believe it is likely to bring the United States’ information use to a grinding halt. Rather, we may see temporary congestion, while regulators approve spectrum new reallocations spectrum-sharing plans, and service providers build out services on new spectrum. These processes, combined with wireless carriers’ improved ability to regulate customer data usage — primarily by charging higher fees and/or capping usage, and offloading traffic via Wi-Fi and other technologies — should allow operators to continue to provide reliable service in the face of increasing demand. These trends are also likely to temper the increase in spectrum prices in the future.

Download Handbook

A PDF version of the Spectrum Handbook 2013 can be downloaded (free) from this post. There are also (paid) Kindle and paperback versions on Amazon.

Part I – provides an overview of the spectrum and the regulatory process.

Part II – explains the various available spectrum bands, discussing their range, location, and physical properties and how these impact their ability to be used. An analysis of the current allocation of these spectrum bands in the United States follows.

Part III – contains detailed explanations of the various spectrum band plans. Throughout the Handbook, we provide links in the footnotes to sources for additional information.


Download (PDF, 6.89MB)

Praise for The Spectrum Handbook 2013

“The Spectrum Handbook 2013 is a great compendium of information. Easy to read and accessible to the layman, The Spectrum Handbook 2013 is a useful reference for anyone looking at investments in wireless spectrum.”

Harold Furchtgott-Roth, PhD. Former commissioner, FCC

“Spectrum and wireless data are the fundamental building blocks of cloud computing and hence our economy, and Armand´s fabulous book describes these assets and technologies better than anything else we have ever read.”

Timothy K. Horan. Managing Director, Head of Communication and Cloud Services Research, Oppenheimer and Co, Inc.

“Spectrum is the electromagnetic lifeblood of the digital economy. This handbook provides a thorough analysis of the legal and economic aspects of spectrum management, both for the US and international perspective. It is a valuable reference for wireless entrepreneurs looking for new opportunities to invest.”

Thomas Welter. Chief Frequency Officer, SFR (France)

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Category: TOOLS

About the Author ()

J. Armand Musey is the president and founder of Summit Ridge Group LLC. Armand specializes in the satellite, media and telecommunications industries. He has a unique blend of 16 years of equity research, investment banking and consulting experience. Armand has completed dozens of financial valuation, strategic analysis, business development, corporate governance and business plan creation assignments in the communications industry and has experience working on numerous financing and M&A transactions. Armand holds an MBA from Northwestern University’s Kellogg Graduate School of Management and a JD (cum laude) from its Law School. He also has an MA from Columbia University and a BA (with honors) from the University of Chicago. He is a member of the Federal Communications Bar Association. Armand is also a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) and a member of the New York Society of Securities Analysts where he chaired the Corporate Governance Committee from 2007-2009.

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