In a largely procedural move, the FCC last week approved a public notice that officially designates the beginning of 800 MHz rebanding as July 27 and establishes several key deadlines for the reconfiguration process that is scheduled to be concluded in the summer of 2008.

The dates in the order are the same dates proposed by the Transition Administrator team earlier this year. By Dec. 27, 2006, Nextel must relocate all 800 MHz incumbents from the 1-120 channels in the first 20 NPSPAC regions scheduled for reconfiguration. By Dec. 27, 2007, all 800 MHz licensees being rebanded must have started the reconfiguration process.

The FCC will issue subsequent public notices 30 days before the start of Wave 2, Wave 3 and Wave 4, respectively. Implementation of Wave 4 could be delayed if treaties with border countries Mexico and Canada cannot be reached by the scheduled start date.