Original URL: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2012/06/20/au_spectrum_sale/

Australian 4G spectrum sale to kick off in April 2013

700MHz and 2.5 GHz up for grabs

By Simon Sharwood

Posted in Broadband, 20th June 2012 02:08 GMT

Australia will reap its Digital Dividend in April 2013, after Minister for Broadband, Communications and the Digital Economy, Senator Stephen Conroy, that month as the time when a spectrum auction will be conducted.

"The date has been decided on the expert advice of the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA)," Senator Conroy said in a statement, as that timing will apparently “… maximise product certainty for bidders prior to the auction and provide new licensees with adequate lead time to plan and deploy networks before their licenses commence."

The spectra that will go on sale reside in the 700MHz and 2.5 GHz bands and have become available thanks to terrestrial television channels changing to digital broadcasts.

Conroy hopes the auction will “pave the way for next generation mobile broadband services in Australia, such as 4G mobile services.”

Affected broadcasters will get a helping hand from the government, which has allocated $143.2 million to help them transition to new arrangements. Punters will also get help, in the form of what Conroy’s department describes as programs that will “…ensure that consumers are well informed about any changes in their local area and what it means for them.” ®