In examining the summary of the FirstNet/Rivada litigation as prepared by RCR Wireless, there may be confirmation that Verizon was the silent "carrier" partner of Rivada. Specifically, in the recently made public documents, the court indicated "the first set of deficiencies related to ‘Rivada’s lack of financial stability, capacity, and required funding'” — including the riskiness of Rivada Mercury’s proposal to monetize the excess Band 14 spectrum through a wholesale marketplace, which required robust Band 4 device support in order to be adopted by non-FirstNet customers". Band 4 consists of the AWS-1 frequencies acquired from SpectrumCo (cable company consortium) by Verizon in 2011. In other words, Rivada intended to monetize the FirstNet spectrum by adding it to Band 4 (AWS-1) capable phones.
While many people have suspected that Verizon was working with Rivada, we haven't seen any other evidence of it. Of course, it is possible that another wireless carrier with AWS-1 (T-Mobile) could have been the partner, but we strongly doubt their participation given the substantial cost of building out a nationwide network to meet the coverage objectives of FirstNet. Alternatively, perhaps Rivada was hoping for Verizon's participation- but based upon rumors we had heard previously, the discussions were farther along than that.