Articles about spectrum

Sweden axes 700MHz spectrum sale over 'national security' fears

In a surprise announcement, the Swedish government has scrapped its plans to auction off 700MHz spectrum citing security concerns. The auction was due to begin on December 1 but acting director of the country's telecoms agency, Post & Telestyrelsen (PTS), Catarina Wretman announced she had decided to cancel it a month before …

Ofcom kicks off 5G auction consultation

Communications regulator Ofcom has opened a consultation on the first tranche of its 5G spectrum auction. The consultation presents its initial thinking on how it could expand spectrum access for mobile services in the 3.6 – 3.8 GHz band, said the regulator. The band is currently used by fixed links and by satellite services …
Kat Hall, 7 Oct 2016
Auctioneer with hammer

FCC airwaves auction opens bidding

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has formally opened the bidding process on a spectrum auction that looks to raise billions in revenues and expand the coverage and quality of wireless broadband networks. The Commission on Tuesday kicked off the "clock phase" portion of the auction, in which telco providers submit …
Shaun Nichols, 16 Aug 2016

Ofcom is to get powers to fine mobe providers for crap service

Digital Economy Bill Communications provider Ofcom has gained powers to fine mobile operators up to £2m if they fail to comply with coverage obligations under their spectrum licence. The new penalties will be introduced under the 150-page Digital Economy Bill, which significantly boost the regulator's powers. The Bill granted the regulator powers …
Kat Hall, 6 Jul 2016
the red underpants are bugging from buechertiger's Flickr feed of Bonn street art

Vodafone changes mind, wants 700 MHz spectrum after all

Vodafone has put a half-billion-dollar offer to the Australian government for the 700 MHz spectrum it skipped in the government's 2013 spectrum auction. The company has told telecommunications industry newsletter Communications Day it wants to take the licenses for a shorter term than the auctioned spectrum – 11 years rather …
Image from Shutterstock 161369036

'Technology enablers' will help Ofcom determine if spectrum can be shared

Ofcom will decide whether spectrum should be shared based in part on whether the technology is available to enable it to happen, it has said. The UK's telecoms regulator said that new technologies can help facilitate spectrum sharing. It said "technology enablers" will be one factor it will consider when deciding whether "the …
OUT-LAW.COM, 21 Apr 2016
A grandmother gives cash to grandson. Photo by Shutterstock

Ofcom puts aside a little bit of spectrum for Internet of Things things

A proportion of very high frequency (VHF) wireless spectrum will be reserved for future use by Internet of Things (IoT) connected devices, the UK telecoms regulator has announced. Ofcom will also create a new category of licence specifically for IoT/machine-to-machine (M2M) communications applications, along with a “dedicated …
OUT-LAW.COM, 31 Mar 2016

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 …

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

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

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

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 …
Hunter, image via Shutterstock

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

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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