Feeds

Mobile heavyweights mass to get Carter over 2Meg for all

Spectrum smackdown imminent

Best practices for enterprise data

Heads of three of the five UK network operators are meeting with Lord Carter, the communications minister, tomorrow morning, along with representatives of the other two, to talk about his demand for 2Mb/sec for all and how to achieve it.

Lord Carter's proposal sees mobile operators trading spectrum to increase coverage, and the good Lord's report states explicitly that if they don't come to a suitable agreement by April then the government will impose one. This is something no one in the industry wants to see.

So the FT reports that everyone who owns network infrastructure has been summoned to meet Kip Meek - the former Ofcom official trying to sort out the details - tomorrow morning.

Vodafone and O2 have already been threatened with removal of their 900MHz spectrum, and it's likely that any imposed solution would see some of that spectrum (which was awarded without charge) allocated elsewhere - probably offered to the competition at Administered Incentive Pricing* as there isn't time to organise an auction. But operators will be more interested in how the government intends to make them responsible for providing universal access.

Under Lord Carter's proposal every home in the UK is entitled to 2Mb/sec broadband, in the same way that every home is currently entitled to a fixed phone line (with a few exceptions, where the householder is permitted to contribute to the cost). But when only BT is responsible for providing universal access that's simple to implement. The shared responsibility envisioned by Lord Carter is much more complicated and will form a central part of the discussions taking place tomorrow.

Negotiations of this kind can take years, and three months is the kind of aggressive timetable that can only be attained by wielding a big stick. Putting senior officers of each network operator into a room together and threatening to strip them of their spectrum is a good first step, but getting them to agree may require something a bit tougher. ®

*AIP - a process by which Ofcom calculates what spectrum would raise at auction, and charges the user that amount.

Recommendations for simplifying OS migration

More from The Register

next story
Trying to sell your house? It'd better have KILLER mobile coverage
More NB than transport links to next-gen buyers - study
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?
They can take our lives, but they'll never take our SPECTRUM
NBN Co adds apartments to FTTP rollout
Commercial trial locations to go live in September
Samsung Z Tizen OS mobe is post-phoned – this time for good?
Russian launch for Sammy's non-droid knocked back
Speak your brains on SIGNAL-FREE mobile comms
Readers chat to the pair who flog the tech
prev story

Whitepapers

7 Elements of Radically Simple OS Migration
Avoid the typical headaches of OS migration during your next project by learning about 7 elements of radically simple OS migration.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
Solving today's distributed Big Data backup challenges
Enable IT efficiency and allow a firm to access and reuse corporate information for competitive advantage, ultimately changing business outcomes.
A new approach to endpoint data protection
What is the best way to ensure comprehensive visibility, management, and control of information on both company-owned and employee-owned devices?