After Cox Communications spent around $304 million in the recent 700 MHz spectrum auction, now several reports are speculating that the company will build out a wireless network through a subsidiary Cox Wireless. The company recently awarded a contract to Chinese equipment maker, Huawei, to supply CDMA gear for a wireless network, according to UBS Research via GigaOm. According to Cable News, there’s a slew of cable companies that are looking at making the multi-million investment in wireless.
The most high-profile investment might come from Time Warner (NYSE: TWX) and Comcast (NSDQ: CMCSA) which is rumored to be speaking with Sprint (NYSE: S) and Clearwire (NSDQ: CLWR) about building a 4G nationwide wireless network. A deal between them, and potentially also Intel (NSDQ: INTC) and Google (NSDQ: GOOG), may come as early as this week. But wireless plays are speculated among even smaller operators. Cable News lists at least three: Vulcan Spectrum, which is linked to Paul Allen, the chairman of Charter Communications (NSDQ: CHTR), bought spectrum for the Northwest for a total of $112 million; Bresnan Communications paid $3.8 million to obtain licenses in Montana; and Bend Broadband of Oregon also locked licenses for $6.74 million. Of course, Nextwave (NSDQ: WAVE) recently announced it was looking at selling its nationwide spectrum, which could also be attractive to a cable operator.
It’s anyone’s guess what exactly any of these operators will do with the spectrum, however, the most likely scenario is for the companies to be interested in the data capabilities, so that they can offer Internet or TV access outside of the homes they currently cover.