MoD to auction off spectrum for LTE

The UK’s Ministry of Defence (MoD) has announced that it will auction off around 200MHz of the radio spectrum it owns. The sale of spectrum, all of which is below 15GHz, will provide the country’s operators an opportunity to beef up their spectrum portfolios as they look to roll out LTE services.

The government body said it is selling the spectrum due to market demand for extra spectrum, fuelled by the sharp rise in the use of smartphones and tablets. Preparations for the auction are expected to start at the end of 2013, and it is due to be completed by the summer of 2014.

The government body said that almost half of all spectrum below 15GHz is held by the public sector for a broad services such as defence, emergency services, transport and science. The spectrum to be sold off is being cleared of military users to contribute towards this target.

“We hope that the sale will help drive the roll-out of new generation networks and universal access to broadband, both of which are vital to the UK’s prosperity,” said minister for defence equipment, support and technology Philip Dunne.

The sale follows the announcement made in the Government’s 2010 Spending Review that at least 500MHz of public spectrum below 5GHz will be released by 2020 for new mobile communications uses.

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  1. Avatar Bob H 19/12/2012 @ 8:49 pm

    I don’t know why so many people online are linking this directly with 4G? Because “below 15GHz” is a very broad target, even “below 5GHz” isn’t that indicative.

  2. Avatar Dawinderpal Sahota 20/12/2012 @ 11:15 am

    Hi Bob, I think this is because the MoD itself specified that the auction will give operators the chance to “buy more spectrum to support the introduction of 4G mobile services.”

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