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Tuesday, December 21, 2010
Qualcomm Sells 700 MHz Spectrum Licenses

Qualcomm today announced that it has agreed to sell its Lower 700 MHz D and E Block (Channel 55 and 56) unpaired U.S. spectrum licenses to AT&T for $1.925 billion.

The sale follows Qualcomm?s previously announced plan to restructure and evaluate strategic options related to the FLO TV business operated by FLO TV Incorporated, a wholly owned subsidiary of Qualcomm. It is expected that the FLO TV business and network will be shut down in March 2011.

AT&T announced today that as part of its longer-term 4G network plan, it intends to deploy this spectrum as supplemental downlink, using carrier aggregation technology. This technology is designed to deliver substantial capacity gains by enabling unpaired spectrum to be used in conjunction with paired spectrum.

Qualcomm is integrating carrier aggregation technology into its chipset roadmap to enable supplemental downlink and intends to market the technology globally. This new technology is expected to create opportunities around the world in markets where unpaired spectrum bands can be made available for wireless operators to use in conjunction with existing paired bands to obtain substantial improvements in their mobile broadband networks.

Qualcomm plans to take advantage of its experience in broadcast technology to develop LTE multicast technologies that address the rapidly growing demand for high-bandwidth video and other multimedia content.

Completion of the spectrum transaction is subject to the satisfaction of customary closing conditions, including approval by the U.S. Federal Communications Commission and clearance from the U.S. Department of Justice. Qualcomm and AT&T anticipate closing the sale during the second half of calendar 2011. The proceeds will be received at closing.

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