Overcast

Overcast

max temp: 15°C

min temp: 12°C

ESTD 1874 Search

The pigs are coming. Find out more about

Pigs Gone Wild

here.

UK: BT to join mobile giants in 4G airwave auction

09:16 20 December 2012

The BT Centre in Newgate Street, London
Photo: Vismedia

The BT Centre in Newgate Street, London Photo: Vismedia

Giles Park / VisualMedia

BT will be among seven bidders competing in next year’s 4G auction in what marks the largest ever sale of mobile airwaves in the UK.

Regulator Ofcom confirmed that mobile giants Vodafone, O2 parent Telefonica, Hutchison 3G and Everything Everywhere (EE) are also on the list, as well as Hong Kong conglomerate PCCW and UK network supplier MLL Telecom.

Ofcom said the auction, which kicks off in January, will herald “better, faster and more reliable mobile broadband connections” for consumers across the UK.

Ed Richards, chief executive of Ofcom, said: “The 4G auction will be a competitive process that will dictate the shape of the UK mobile phone market for the next decade and beyond.”

While all the UK’s major mobile operators are bidding, international player PCCW and MLL are also competing to secure a slice of 4G in Britain.

PCCW owns Hong Kong Telecom, while MLL is a private-equity backed firm based in Buckinghamshire that supports fixed and wireless services in the UK.

Bidders will be competing to buy airwaves in two separate bands - higher frequency 2.6 GHz and lower frequency 800 MHz - with around 28 lots of spectrum up for grabs in total.

EE, which was formed from the merger of Orange and T-Mobile, already has access to 4G and was the first to offer a 4G network in the UK, but is bidding to secure more airwaves in the sale.

BT has previously expressed interest in acquiring 2.6GHz frequencies to bolster its wi-fi offering, although it is not thought to have aspirations of becoming a major mobile player.

It is hoped the 4G sale will generate a windfall for the Government, following successful auctions in other countries.

Mobile operators in the Netherlands paid a total 3.8 billion euro (£3.1 billion) for the country’s 4G spectrum last Friday, easily surpassing expectations of around 450 million euro (£366 million). In Ireland last month, operators overcame a challenging economy to generate 854 million euro (£700 million).

Ofcom has placed a reserve price of £1.3 billion on the 4G sale, but the Government’s tax and spending watchdog this month estimated a £3.5 billion boost to the public finances.

The regulator wants at least four mobile wholesalers in the UK to drive competition in the market and said the auction had been designed to achieve this.

The watchdog said 4G services should make it much quicker to surf the web on mobiles, giving speeds close to home broadband services and allowing consumers to stream high-quality video, watching live TV and downloading large files.

For the typical user, download speeds of initial 4G networks will be at least five to seven times faster than those for existing 3G networks.

This means a music album that takes 20 minutes to download on a 3G phone will take just over three minutes on 4G.

0 comments

The Teapot at Mcginty's Ipswich. Junk Food cafe run by Mischa Pearson and voulnteers.
Pictured Sarah sharlott, kath gosling, mischa Pearson, Adam Ferguson, Anna engstrom

An award-winning pay-what-you-feel cafe which supports dozens of homeless and vulnerable people in Ipswich has been given just three weeks to find a new base.

Former Seven Resourcing apprentices with Ben Gummer MP, from left, Elliot Frost, Mike Wright, Jade Nunn, Jesse Miller, Ben Gummer and George Owen.

Ipswich-based specialist recruitment agency Seven Resourcing has hosted a visit from the town’s MP, Ben Gummer, to showcase the success of its apprenticeship scheme.

Spending on Eating Out remained robust during April, according to a survey carried out for Greene King.

Britons continued to enjoy eating out during April, according to a new survey, despite reports of growing concern over the strength of the UK economy and the potential impact of a vote to leave the EU in next month’s referendum.

Meeting organised by the Institute of Directors about Suffolks burgeoning film industry. Julien Mery, co-founder of Livid Films and director of Film Suffolk, discussed how the creative community in Suffolk is putting the county on the UK and worlds creative industry map. L-R Sarah Brown, Graham Kill, Julien Mery and Old Jet's Jesse Quin.

A group of executives got to see the creative side of Suffolk’s economy at one of the county’s most popular filmmaking locations.

Oliver Paul, owner of the Suffolk Food Hall, DEFRA Secretary Liz Truss, South Suffolk MP James Cartlidge and Babergh District Councillor Jennie Jenkins meet for an informal meeting on the outcome of the RDPE funding provided for the commercial artisan kitchens in the Cookhouse at the Suffolk Food Hall.

Apprenticeship Levy funding from major supermarket chains and food manufacturers could deliver a boost to skills training for smaller food businesses and farming, a senior Government minister has said during a visit to Suffolk.

Most read

Great Days Out

cover

Click here to view
the Great Days Out
supplement

View

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

Great British Life

Great British Life
MyDate24 MyPhotos24