There are a few big “holy grails” when it comes to wireless network connectivity, and besides appropriately-priced data rates and total saturation of coverage, there’s the dream of phones that could be used on any carrier of your choice. The move to LTE teases at that dream, especially if VoLTE ever becomes popular, but we still have each carrier operating service on different slices of the spectrum. There’s a chance that might not always be the case, upon AT&T, Verizon, and T-Mobile announcing their participation in an experiment to share spectrum currently reserved by the US military.
The chunk of spectrum from 1755MHz to 1850MHz will be shared by these carriers, as well as the federal government, as they test to see just how feasible operation on it might be.
There are concerns over interference with the federal use of the band, so the situation will be monitored closely, but if successful there’s the chance that this could be the start of a new era of interoperability. It’s far too early to get excited about this, but we’ll be on the lookout for further news of progress with this experiment.