Wednesday, June 5, 2013

What if FirstNet wants to do a deal with the carriers more than the carriers want to do a deal with them?

Things change -- what if Verizon doesn’t give a crap about FirstNet? What if FirstNet has high hopes of working with the carriers, but the carriers don’t have any interest in working with them? In actuality it wouldn’t be the first time – I mean look at the Universal Service Fund and how well that is being rolled out. What if a commercial carrier signs up to partner with FirstNet by expanded infrastructure only to have the Federal and State taxpaying mechanism fall short of its planned objectives? Who will be left holding the bag? My bet the carriers.

If I were a carrier and I had $30 Billion invested in the stacked technologies of 2G, 3G and now 4G consolidated into huge infrastructure costs...why would I want to just add more infrastructure on top of what I already have? Especially when I’m actually trying to reduce the overhead of my infrastructure so that I can reap the benefits on selling the more lucrative content and services that deliver a better ROI than the ever decreasing ARPU (Average Rates Per User).

If this is indeed the case then why would FirstNet continue down the path of believing that a commercial carrier relationship is what they need to deliver the Nationwide Public Safety Broadband Network? The first thing that comes to mind are ideas of grandeur, or maybe just the lack of experience. Or maybe their plan is starting to fall apart...what then? The reality is that if you don’t funnel your idea based off a viable business model you will be taking everyone down a path of confusion that will ultimately lead to a lack of confidence in your actions. Is that what's happening now? I mean we've been hearing the same message now for the last 9-months. To me it's a matter of fact that the industry is losing faith and the reality is setting in. Everyone is starting to realize that if anything is going to get done with FirstNet -- it will have to happen at the State level. Frankly would we think anything different? Can anyone name a Federal program that actually works?

What will happen with the spectrum? Without spectrum the State’s can’t build anything. What concerns me is a recent statement by one of the FirstNet members who stated “what’s in it for FirstNet? What should FirstNet expect for its share of revenue?” Who is the spectrum allocated for again? Such statements throws me for a loop, because I thought the network was for first response. Or is this a characteristic of a commercial executive trying to build a Public Safety network? In reality FirstNet stands a better chance of collecting more revenue by partnering with the State’s than trying to do it alone. But it's starting to look like FirstNet is trying to utilize $7 Billion in grants and spectrum sales just for the sake of spending...what really scares me is that they might not even know it. If they were to just allocate the spectrum to the States and then take a share of each State’s P3 model – the model I promote – to which they could reap the benefit of much more revenue than they would have ever experienced otherwise. Plus the taxpayers could get their money back – our money back.

Time for FirstNet to gravitate to my model that let the State’s lead the effort of monetizing the spectrum for the own use….a shared effort of FirstNet and the State.

Just some guy and a blog… 

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