Verizon and AT&T just spent almost $70 billion on spectrum to improve their 5G networks

Verizon and AT&T just spent almost $70 billion on spectrum to improve their 5G networks


Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

The much-anticipated results of the FCC’s Auction 107 are in, with Verizon and AT&T spending big as anticipated on the coveted C-band spectrum. Verizon in particular spent nearly twice as much as AT&T, with a total spend of $45.4 billion. AT&T’s total bid adds up to $23.4 billion. T-Mobile is in a distant third at $9.3 billion, which was also expected thanks to the strong midband spectrum holdings that the company already had following its acquisition of Sprint.

There’s nothing outright surprising here: we’ve known for a while that the total bidding added up to over $80 billion, and that Verizon and AT&T in particular would be the top bidders. Those two carriers’ nationwide 5G networks currently rely on narrower low-band frequencies that…

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