Court allows 5G mobile spectrum auction to proceed

Wednesday, February 14th 2018

The Court of Appeal in London has allowed the forthcoming auction of 4G and 5G oriented radio spectrum to proceed, after rejecting the appeal by Three UK. The final attempt by the litigating operator to make Ofcom place a 30% spectrum cap on spectrum holding in the 2.3GHz and 3.4GHz bands have failed. The proposed cap by Three UK was aimed at stopping EE from bidding in the auction and hampering Vodafone's prospects.

It may be noted that currently the telecoms regulator has already placed a cap of 255MHz effective on the freed spectrum frequency that's straight away available with also total cap of 340MHz on the spectrum any one operator can hold overall, which is equivalent to a cap of nearly 37%! Apparently this cap will stop EE from bidding for a slot in the 2.3GHz bandwidth, whereas not for a slot in the 3.4GHz bandwidth.

Ofcom sees the future launch of 5G based very fast mobile broadband services, very important, which is slotted on the 3.4GHz bandwidth. The regulator naturally doesn't want to stop EE's bidding here. The rejection by the court of this last legal challenge from Three UK, paves the way for Ofcom to proceed with the spectrum auction as planned and also to confirm very shortly the dates officially.

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