Nowak Argues for Delaying Spectrum Auction

The National Post's Peter Nowak with an interesting post on the merits of delaying the Canadian spectrum auction in order to follow the U.S. move toward greater openness.


  1. To me it looks like another flip-flop from Nowak. For the past 6 months he has been whining about the slow pace of wireless service innovation in Canada and now he wants the feds slow down the allocation of the new spectrum which is an essential enabler of the very services he suggests are missing in Canada. Either his logic is flawed or he has a new agenda.

  2. Peter Nowak says:

    Nope, no agenda or flip flopping. Just a suggestion that the government can kill two birds with one stone by delaying the current auction and applying rules to it that are similar to the FCC’s. Then carriers here could introduce the advance services we’re lacking, and do it on open networks and devices at the same time. Doing that would allow Canada to leapfrog the U.S. for a change.

  3. Chris Smith says:

    Industry Canada already has this on it’
    Why can’t they apply such rules to the next round of auctions already planned? They asked for comments for those auctions.

    If people take the time to read all the comments Industry Canada posted, you’ll see that I suggested such rules be applied to the new wireless spectrum.

    The biggest advantage I see is that open access rules are “flat rules” that would apply equally whether a bidder is new or incumbent. The only thing that is a little tricky is ensuring that new spectrum is not excessively tied to existing spectrum by incumbent bidders, which might make open access apparently impossible because it doesn’t apply to existing licences.

  4. Attnetion Peter Nowak et al.
    I would like to hear Mr. Nowak’s and any other industry observer/analyst’s opinion on the impeding spectrum auction.

    When do you anticipate the rules to be coming out considering Mr. Prentice’s recent comments?

    Do you believe his meeting with the execs of Big 3 in Canada this late in the game was purposeful and if so, what do you believe are the reasons for this? In my opinion, a meeting this late in the game indicates that a decision has already been made and this was IC’s way of softening the blow to the Big 3. But I could be dead wrong.

    Finally, I know Mr. Nowak has followed the developments at Look Communications and Unique Broadband Systems. What are his opinions at this point in time considering we’re about a year in since Greenhill was acquired to sell part or all of both companies. And we’ve seen the original $480M lawsuit expand to include Rogers, BCE and Inukshuk Wireless Partnership and also a separate suit aimed at BCE over the billing disputes. Furthermore, the legal counsel for Look/UBS has “blurted out” that BCE was willing to pay “hundreds of millions of dollars” for Look. I anticipate that these developments signal significant interest by the big 3 in Look but also the hesitation of Look and UBS’ management to sell both companies and settle the suit simultaneously.

    Again, I follow the telecom sector quite closely and would really appreciate hearing some thoughts and opinions.

    Thank you.