On May 1st, 2015, Industry Canada announced that it will hold another wireless spectrum auction in August 2015, featuring unallocated spectrum licences from the recent 700 MHz and AWS-3 auctions. The remaining unallocated spectrum will be offered in the form of 18 new licences for Yukon, the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Manitoba and Saskatchewan.
Nordicity applauds this decision of Industry Canada, clearly aimed at improving the reach to, and wireless coverage of the underserved Northern and rural communities. “We are pleased to see this decision”, says Stuart Jack, Partner at Nordicity and Lead, Ottawa office. “We, at Nordicity, have been focused on the Canadian North for a very long time and recently, undertook several broadband connectivity research projects for territorial and regional governments. Earlier this year we helped a number of ISPs - including those in regional and remote areas, with their applications for federal funding under Connecting Canadians program. We are confident that having more spectrum in quality bands like 700 MHz and AWS-3 will result in improved connectivity and connectedness of rural and Northern communities.”
The upcoming August 2015 auction for the residual licences will encompass the sealed bid format for the 700 MHz licences and the innovative combinatorial sealed-bid format for the AWS-3 licences, where a bidder may bid on a combination of licences (one of 10 MHz, or two of 20 MHz, or three of 30 MHz of combined spectrum). The winners’ pricing determination algorithm used in the AWS-3 portion of the auction utilizes the format similar to the one used in the current 2500 MHz Broadband Radio Service (BRS) auction.
Nordicity is ready to help prospective bidders prepare and participate in this auction. “Combinatorial auctions are quite complex and unintuitive”, says Alex Pavlovic, Director of Technology at Nordicity. “Nordicity has knowledge, experience and tools to help prospective bidders with preparation and participation in the upcoming August auction. We would be happy to help Canadian operators with this auction, as we have been doing for the past several auctions held by Industry Canada.”
Nordicity has been providing expert advice and consulting services regarding spectrum auctions – to network operators and national regulators alike, and has participated in Industry Canada’s 700 MHz Mobile Broadband Services (MBS, 2014) and the ongoing 2500 MHz BRS auction, both of which have been delivered in the Combinatorial Clock Auction (CCA) format.
For the 700 MHz and the 2500 MHz auctions, Nordicity has partnered with Carleton University and its Centre for Quantitative Analysis and Decision Support (CQADS) to deliver the advanced CCA auction simulation tool which allows simulation of main stages of the CCA auction: clock rounds and supplementary round (including OR bidding and Winning and Price Determination), visualizes the complex format of the CCA, facilitates definition of robotic bidders with sophisticated bidding behaviour, and greatly facilitates preparations for participation in the real auction.
The Nordicity CCA tool has been successfully used with several clients.