Articles about spectrum

DARPA issues collaborative spectrum sharing challenge

Static spectrum allocation is going to pass its use-by date soon, according to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which has kicked off a US$2 million challenge to find co-operative ways to share radio frequencies. DARPA's project page, here, describes its aim simply: it wants to replace static spectrum …
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SoftBank crashes into America's broadband spectrum party, checkbook in hand

US carrier Sprint could be getting in on the upcoming FCC wireless spectrum auction after all. According to a report from financial news service CTFN, SoftBank, based in Japan, is reportedly mulling a run at the upcoming 600MHz auction. The report claims SoftBank would form a new company that would bid on the spectrum space …
Shaun Nichols, 14 Mar 2016

Sir Clive Sinclair in tech tin-rattle triumph

Sir Clive Sinclair has in just three days tin-rattled his way to over £160,000 towards production of the Sinclair ZX Spectrum Vega+, described breathlessly as "the world’s only hand-held LCD games console with 1,000 licensed games inside that can also connect to your TV!!". Following the success of the similarly crowdfunded …
Lester Haines, 18 Feb 2016
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Optus, Telstra, TPG and Vodafone spaff AU$543.5m on spectrum

Australia has scored AU$543.5m (US$391m) for part of its 1800 MHz spectrum. The The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) has announced the outcome of auctions it initiated in November 2015, with the following results. Bidder Total price Optus Mobile $196 million Telstra $191 million …
Cell tower, view from below. Image by Shutterstock.com

America to ITU: Sort out your spectrum policy

America is threatening to “go it alone” on spectrum policy, again. Speaking to think-tank New America, Federal Communications Commissioner Michael O'Reilly took a swipe at last year's World Radiocommunication Conference and said America “and other countries … will move forward in key spectrum areas, such as 600 MHz and 28 GHz …
Ofcom has great power over mobiles

Ofcom retreats from 4G spectrum auction after legal threat from Three, O2

Ofcom has halted its 4G spectrum auction, following threats of legal action from Telefónica UK and Hutchison. The two mobile operators are currently being probed by antitrust officials in Brussels, who are considering whether Telefónica UK's planned sell-off of O2 to Three owner Hutchison "would harm competition". The firms' …
Kelly Fiveash, 4 Dec 2015
Cell tower, view from below. Image by Shutterstock.com

NSW government mulls unified public safety comms

The government of the Australian state of New South Wales has completed a review of emergency services telecommunications, and has decided it wants a single statewide network. The review (PDF here), conducted by the NSW Telco Authority, concludes there's no point to having individual agencies own and operate their own networks …
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Broadband's frequency hunters denied Freeview patch – for now

Freeview is safe. For now. Mobile operators with broadband services were denied the 470-694MHz frequency used by the terrestrial TV service. The decision was taken at a World Radio Conference (WRC) in Geneva, Switzerland with a review of the whole UHF band planned 2023. Essentially, the future of Freeview is now assured, …
Alex Sinclair, GSMA CTO

GSMA offers a share and share alike approach to the C-Band

The trade association for mobile operators, the GSMA, has taken up arms in support of its members' campaign for three areas of spectrum at the World Radiocommunication Conference, currently being held in Geneva. The organisation is looking to nab the L-Band, sub 700MHz (including 470-694), where it will be taking on the TV …
Simon Rockman, 6 Nov 2015
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FCC under fire over TV, mobile broadband signal interference fears

Staff at the FCC, America's communications watchdog, have been accused of not doing enough to prevent TV broadcasts from interfering with mobile broadband signals. This comes as television stations in the US prepare to auction off some of their radio frequencies, which can then be used by cellphone networks to extend their …
Shaun Nichols, 27 Oct 2015
Cellular antenna. Source: Vxla/Flickr

Google and cable pals oppose LTE-U's spectrum grab plan

America's National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) has recruited a bunch of high-profile supporters in its attempt to fend off the Federal Communications Commision's interest in LTE-U. LTE-U is a spectrum-plus-standards proposal under which wireless kit could opportunistically use empty spectrum, even if a …
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Ofcom: Ahem, about that 28GHz spectrum. Let's talk fees

Having found that it can charge more than it used to for mobile spectrum, Ofcom is planning the same trick for 28GHz Broadband Fixed Wireless Access. The pricing model radio spectrum charges used to be called AIP (administered incentive pricing), which covered Ofcom’s cost of administering the spectrum. But then Ofcom hit …
Simon Rockman, 2 Oct 2015

Ofcom triples licence fees for mobile operators to £200m

Ofcom has tripled its spectrum use licences fees for O2, Vodafone, Three, and EE, pushing the figure to damn near £200m. The regulator concluded that mobile operators should pay a combined annual total of £80.3m for the 900MHz band, and £119.3m for the 1800MHz band. The spectrum is used to provide voice, and data via 2G, 3G …
Kat Hall, 24 Sep 2015
Cell tower, view from below. Image by Shutterstock.com

Roll-your-own public safety broadband network too pricey for Australia

Australia’s Productivity Commission says emergency services should drop the idea of building a dedicated mobile broadband network and use commercial services instead. In its draft report, the Productivity Commission says a dedicated network with its own spectrum would cost more than A$6 billion over the next 20 years. …
Bill Bennett, 23 Sep 2015
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What should we do with this chunk of dead air? Ofcom wants to know

VHF isn’t just for voice. Ofcom is seeking advice on how to get things connected in the spectrum space between 30MHz and 300MHz. The regulator argues that lots of spectrum is underused, or not used for the most productive things. In its consultation (PDF), Ofcom says: This document aims to encourage investment and innovation …
Simon Rockman, 14 Sep 2015
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Qualcomm sells L-Band spectrum to Vodafone, Three for massive profit

As we reported in June, Qualcomm has been looking to sell its 1452-1492MHz spectrum – and it seems it's found willing buyers in the form of Vodafone and Three. It's thought the two networks paid over £100m in total for the spectrum. The chip company rather lucked out, having paid £8.3m at auction in 2008. At the time we saw …
Simon Rockman, 25 Aug 2015

FCC: No, Dish, you're not a 'small business' so forget the $3bn price cut

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued an order preventing satellite TV giant Dish from purchasing broadcast spectrum rights under the guise of a small business. The FCC ruled that the company cannot operate two small subsidiaries and receive discounts reserved for small businesses, while bidding for …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Aug 2015
Indian mobile use

Indian mobe networks don’t want 700MHz – because they're too poor

While most telcos are baying for more radio spectrum to stuff with mobile internet broadband, the Indian operators are asking their government to hold off. They want the hold not just on the high-frequency 2.6GHz and 3.4GHz spectrum that will be useful for cities, but for the extra-valuable 700MHz spectrum that would give the …
Simon Rockman, 28 Jul 2015

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