Feeds

UK military faces spectrum sell off

Forces rely on air power to pay the bills

Intelligent flash storage arrays

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) may sell off some of its reserved radio spectrum, potentially for large sums. Guidelines for sale of military frequencies are being drawn up by the communications regulator, Ofcom.

“Public bodies and the MoD in particular hold some of the most valuable and sought-after radio spectrum," said Ofcom chief Ed Richards earlier today.

"By working with these organisations we are enabling them to trade and release this spectrum which will create new opportunities for the development of wireless services for the whole country."

The idea behind allowing public bodies to trade in spectrum is that market conditions will ensure the most economically efficient use of the available capability, so benefiting the nation as a whole.

According to the regulator, public-sector organisations hold around half the spectrum in the desirable sub-15GHz range, with the MoD accounting for three-quarters of this (or about a third overall). Ofcom indicated that the government bands could be worth anywhere from £3bn to £20bn+, suggesting that the MoD is sitting on up to £15bn-worth of air.

The MoD is said to be "committed to sharing", and will consult on proposals in May. With the UK defence budget currently under severe pressure, it's certainly believable that the military brass may be eager to make sales - even if they don't get to keep the money. Under Treasury accounting rules introduced in recent years, holding onto the spectrum could cause serious financial difficulties if the frequencies stay on the MoD balance sheet as capital assets.®

Remote control for virtualized desktops

More from The Register

next story
YOU are the threat: True confessions of real-life sysadmins
Who will save the systems from the men and women who save the systems from you?
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
Broadband sellers in the UK are UP TO no good, says Which?
Speedy network claims only apply to 10% of customers
Virgin Media struck dumb by NATIONWIDE packet loss balls-up
Turning it off and on again fixes glitch 12 HOURS LATER
Ofcom snatches 700MHz off digital telly, hands it to mobile data providers
Hungry mobe'n'slab-waving Blighty swallows spectrum
Fujitsu CTO: We'll be 3D-printing tech execs in 15 years
Fleshy techie disses network neutrality, helmet-less motorcyclists
Facebook, working on Facebook at Work, works on Facebook. At Work
You don't want your cat or drunk pics at the office
prev story

Whitepapers

Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Internet Security Threat Report 2014
An overview and analysis of the year in global threat activity: identify, analyze, and provide commentary on emerging trends in the dynamic threat landscape.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.