The New York Times reports that on Monday, Google filed a proposal with the Federal Communications Commission to suggest that radio airwaves be sold in a real-time auction, like the search ad network run by Google AdWords. Google argues in their petition that a real-time auction would maximize efficiency of spectrum allocation, thus affording more broadband options for consumers. Though Google denies any plans to bid in an upcoming sale of broadcast spectrum (scheduled for February 2009), Google has been a vocal advocate of a nationwide digital wireless network that might serve as an alternative broadband channel. Google promotes competition among existing digital network providers and seeks to establish a more open, market-driven spectrum access policy.
USA Today points out that another group, Frontline Wireless, has already made a similar appeal to the FCC. Frontline is appealing to the FCC to establish an auction model that considers the benefit to public safety from an inter-operable, universally accessible communications system.