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Spectrum auction delay gives PMSE time

The saga surround the reallocation of frequency spectrum in the UK has taken yet another turn with the regulator, Ofcom, putting back the auctions for 4G space until at least the fourth quarter of 2012, writes Kevin Hilton.

The saga surround the reallocation of frequency spectrum in the UK has taken yet another turn with the regulator, Ofcom, putting back the auctions for 4G space until at least the fourth quarter of 2012, writes Kevin Hilton. This is likely to prolong the uncertainty for PMSE (programme makers and special events) users, although they will be able to continue using the 800MHz band, including channel 69, until the end of this year. In a statement Ofcom said the consultation on the Everything Everywhere (Orange and T-Mobile) 1,800MHz spectrum licences to allow use of LTE (long term evolution) and WiMAX technologies had been extended from 17 April to 8 May 2012. The regulator said this had been done “following requests from stakeholders for more time to respond.” The feeling among the PMSE community is that this means the other major mobile phone companies, all of which are seen as the main bidders for the spectrum, are trying to protect their individual interests. “This is just another one of many delays in the whole process,” comments Alan March (pictured) from BEIRG (British Entertainment Industry Radio Group). “It gives wireless microphone and in-ear monitor users more time to access the 800MHz band and channel 69 but there has already been a huge switch with people buying new equipment. And there is also the situation of systems that had been handed in being sold back into the market.” www.ofcom.org.uk
www.beirg.co.uk

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