Recall Google bid $4.8B+ for spectrum 5 years ago.
For that same bid today, Google could own 1/2 Clearwire which includes towers, radios, core - everything needed to transmit googles of data on day-one.
Carrier subsidizes are declining, Apple knows this and must expand (change) the revenue model.
Wholesale data carriers could EASILY earn $20/mo profit from every US mobile user. Once in place, these networks are cash-cows.
Google and Apple split $4B monthly revenue PLUS now have the SUPER DATA PIPE they have yearned for all these years.
Apple / Google TV
Apple / Google Wallet
Apple / Google Market Place
Add DISH to the mix and you have SAT backhaul and content and SLING technology which is HUGE.
SLING needs the FAT PIPE.
We'll get $8 for our Clearwire and I see a Sprint buyout at $9!
Prior to the 700MHz auction, Google, among others, pushed for open access for applications and IP access rules with the FCC. The problem with placing requirements on how spectrum can be legally monopolized (used) by the operators, is that this can reduce their willingness to bid up the price of the spectrum. And since the FCC is about the only department that makes billions in revenue so that the other branches of government can spend it or drip a few drops in the bucket to pay down the national dept, the FCC must assure that they do their part in selling off your spectrum at a high price. So, the FCC set the rule that the bid had to reach a level of a few billion in order for the open access rules to come into force. Google, whom I thought was in it for strategic reasons and would not actually wish to own the spectrum licenses, participated in the bidding only until it reached slightly above the threshold for open access rules to kick in. Today we have open access in that the devices and service you buy from Verizon or AT&T are open to applications running on them... but they do not roam. That is because open IP is relatively easy to judge while roaming is a commercial development... that operators can shunt off into the future.. customers don't demand roaming on LTE so much that the FCC can push it on the operators.
actually, CLWR does not own any towers...they lease tower & ground space from 3rd parties i.e. at&t,vzw, t-mobile, etc. mccaw did do a good job initially getting MLA's in place for CLWR at a very low monthly-yearly rate on those tower's and on some tower's, CLWR has co-planed with Sprint, meaning CLWR has a seperate ground lease area but uses the same Sprint rad center's Sprint's uses today...CLWR does have sub-lease rights in most cases, albeit with landlord written consents, that would allow CLWR to allow a entity like DISH or Google to co-plane at CLWR's existing elevations on the tower, but would need to grab additional ground space from CLWR's landlord, since CLWR's ground lease areas in most cases are no larger then a 7'x7' ground area.....no doubt though, CLWR's landlord's on existing tower's are locked and loaded when it comes to co-location agreements with anyone who has the funds to sign a 50 or 99 year ground and or tower lease with them....money is money and they don't care how the check gets to them....