Verizon Sues FCC to Shut Down Open Access 700MHz Auction Rules

You knew it would happen. Verizon has sued the FCC over the rules laid down for the auction of the 700MHz spectrum that begins in January 2008. If you haven’t been following along, the 700MHz spectrum contains the airwaves that are being returned for use by television broadcasters as they begin to shut down analog signals in the US. The FCC runs the auction on behalf of US citizens, who own the airwaves, and has set down some rules that require the winners to let consumers connect with the device of their choice and with the software of their choice. Google offered up the $4.6 billion reserve price and actually asked for more in the way of free choice over the new broadband spectrum.

Now Verizon has sued the FCC trying to overturn the Open Access restrictions. I’m sure Verizion isn’t alone among the Telcos who don’t want to see a device independent broadband spectrum, as this would take away the ability of the company to place contract dependent restrictions on their customers. I’m sure this fight is only going to intensify as things get closer, and I’m hoping Google continues to go to bat for consumers on this.