Dish Network considering 'strategic options' after winning FCC approval to build wireless network

Dish Network (Nasdaq: DISH) stock jumped more than 2 percent Wednesday, after the FCC announced late Tuesday that Dish could use wireless broadband spectrum it acquired from TerreStar and DBSD North America to launch a wireless phone and high-speed Internet service.

While Dish chairman Charlie Ergen said in July that the company would create "tens of thousands of new jobs" if it got the green light to use the AWS-4 spectrum to challenge Comcast (Nasdaq: CMCSA), Verizon (NYSE: VZ) and other broadband providers, the company said it is still reviewing the FCC decision.

"Following a more thorough review of the order and its technical details, Dish will consider its strategic options and the optimal approach to put this spectrum to use for the benefit of consumers," Jeff Blum, Dish SVP and deputy general counsel, said in a prepared statement.

Ergen has said that Dish may use the spectrum to partner with an existing wireless provider such as Sprint (NYSE: S). Dish has also had exploratory talks with Google (Nasdaq: GOOG) on ways the companies could team up to use the wireless broadband spectrum, The Wall Street Journal reported last month.

While it's not clear how Ergen will use the spectrum, winning FCC approval could help Dish compete with the broadband products marketed by its cable rivals who are partnering with Verizon Wireless on joint marketing promotions. Comcast, Time Warner Cable (NYSE: TWC) and Bright House are also working with Verizon to develop new services for subscribers.

For more:
- see the Dish statement
- see the FCC order

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