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FCC gets billions from 5G spectrum auction

AT&T and T-Mobile committed to spend a combined $1.8 billion in an auction for the high-frequency spectrum needed to deliver some of the fastest 5G speeds, per Ars Technica.

Why it matters: Spectrum is the foundation of any cellular network and delivering 5G requires higher frequency bandwidth than many carriers have in their possession.

  • US Cellular, Verizon and upstart Starry also agreed to plunk down significant cash at the auction.

The bottom line: Verizon already has a significant amount of high-bandwidth spectrum, while Sprint plans to tap its nationwide mid-band spectrum as the center of its 5G strategy.

Go deeper: The dangers of over-hyping 5G