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Rule Parts

47 CFR, Parts 1, 101

Radio Service Code(s)

  • DV

Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Service (MVDDS) provides consumers with TV programming and Internet connectivity from terrestrial transmitters, under exacting technical arrangements that permit it to share the spectrum with satellites (Direct Broadcast Satellites Service). MVDDS is licensed for market areas on the basis of MVDs. See PN DA 04-1717 (pdf).

Each licensee receives one spectrum block of 500 megahertz per geographic area that the licensee can use in any size channels.  MVDDS licenses can be partitioned along county borders. Disaggregation of spectrum is not allowed.  “Partitioning” is the assignment of geographic portions of a license along geopolitical or other boundaries. “Disaggregation” is the assignment of discrete portions or “blocks” of spectrum licensed to a geographic licensee or qualifying entity.

MVDDS licensees may use spectrum in the 12.2 – 12.7 GHz band for any digital fixed non-broadcast service including one-way direct-to-home/office wireless service. Mobile and aeronautical services are not authorized. Two-way services may be provided by using other spectrum or media for the return or upstream path.

The FCC held Multichannel Video Distribution and Data Service (MVDDS) auctions in January 2004 (Auction 53) and in December 2005 (Auction 63).

The FCC requires most wireless telecommunications services licensees 1) to construct their authorized system or meet specific coverage requirements within a given time period and 2) to notify the Commission that the requirement has been met. This time period varies depending on the radio service in which the license is held. For MVDDS licenses, the license term and construction requirements are set forth set forth in 47 CFR § 101.1413 License term and construction requirements.


You may be able to obtain a MVDDS license(s) from a current licensee. Licensees may sell all or part of their licenses, subject to FCC approval, to other entities. You may also acquire a company, including its licenses. All of these transactions require Online Filing of Form 603 via the Universal Licensing System. Spectrum leasing requires Online Filing of Form 608 via the Universal Licensing System.
Method for Obtaining Spectrum 47 CFR Rule Section
Assignment of Authorization
Sale of an entire license.
Sale of part of a license based on a geographic area (county borders for MVDDS).
Disaggregation (not permitted for MVDDS)
Sale of part of license based on discrete portions of "blocks" of spectrum.
Spectrum Leasing
Leasing of all or a part of a licensee's spectrum usage rights associated with a license (no disaggregation for MVDDS).
1.9001 – 1.9060
Transfer of Control
Acquisition of a company and its assets, including its licenses.


On January 15, 2021, the Commission released a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking, Expanding Flexible Use of the 12.2-12.7 GHz Band (WT Docket No. 20-443).  PDF