Feeds

EU to evict broadcasters from upper end of spectrum

Ofcom calls it right

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

The EU has decided that broadcasters across Europe should clear out of 790-862MHz, committing to a plan accurately predicted by Ofcom.

Ofcom cares because the top end of that band is currently used by the Programme Making and Special Events (PMSE) crowd, whom Ofcom is hoping to relocate down to the dial to somewhere around 606MHz. Assuming that happens, and the other member states are similarly proactive, then kit operating in the EU-wide band could be sold across Europe, and punters might even be able to roam between countries.

The decision (pdf) covers the spectrum between 790MHz and 862MHz, and is intended to prevent any countries broadcasting TV signals while those next door are trying to provide high-speed internet access. But enabling cross-border equipment sales and roaming won't do any harm either.

Not that anyone is yet sure what kind of services will be offered over the Digital Dividend when it comes on line. In the UK the block covered by the decision is just over half what's being auctioned off - another chunk from 550MHz to 606MHz is up for grabs too, putting a total of 128MHz of low-end spectrum on the block.

For comparison, the four competing 3G networks in the UK fit into 120MHz of bandwidth, and let's not forget that Ofcom is planning to auction off 200MHz of 2.6GHz spectrum at the same time. Sometimes it's hard to remember that there's such a shortage of the stuff.

In the UK nothing comes on line until after the Olympics, though Ofcom is still hoping to hold an auction before then.

EU-wide compatibility will drive up the value of the upper block, but with LTE the technology of choice, and a standard band in which to run it, the concept of cross-Europe broadband is possible. Whether any of us will be able to afford the roaming rates is another question entirely. ®

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Scotland's BIG question: Will independence cost me my broadband?
They can take our lives, but they'll never take our SPECTRUM
iWallet: No BONKING PLEASE, we're Apple
BLE-ding iPhones, not NFC bonkers, will drive trend - marketeers
Trying to sell your house? It'd better have KILLER mobile coverage
More NB than transport links to next-gen buyers - study
Auntie remains MYSTIFIED by that weekend BBC iPlayer and website outage
Still doing 'forensics' on the caching layer – Beeb digi wonk
Speak your brains on SIGNAL-FREE mobile comms firm here
Is goTenna tech a goer? Time to grill CEO, CTO
NBN Co adds apartments to FTTP rollout
Commercial trial locations to go live in September
prev story

Whitepapers

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.
Backing up Big Data
Solving backup challenges and “protect everything from everywhere,” as we move into the era of big data management and the adoption of BYOD.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.