Ofcom publishes 4G auction timetable
|12 Nov 2012 2:45 GMT||Back|
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The UK’s 4G auction will take place earlier than expected, with bidding set to start in January 2012.
Ofcom has published a timetable for the 4G auction along with a new 4G consumer page which has information and advice on the auction and 4G.
Ofcom has set a provisional deadline of 11 December for mobile operators to apply to take part in the bidding process. The telecom regulator will confirm the date by 26 November.
A reserve price of £1.3bn has been set, in what Ofcom claims is the largest ever auction of mobile airways in the UK.
EE is the only operator currently offering 4G in the UK after Ofcom gave it permission to use its existing spectrum to launch its 4G service in October. The mobile giant has since launched a major marketing campaign to promote its 4G services.
Ofcom approved the October launch of EE’s 4G, saying that consumers would “benefit significantly from gaining early access to 4G services and that there was “no material risk that those benefits would be outweighed by a distortion of competition”.
As reported in The Telegraph, EE has admitted a teething problem after launch with customers branding the service a rush job. Complaints include difficulties obtaining SIM cards, connecting to the network and confusing customer service systems.
4G auction timetable:
11 December – deadline for applications and initial deposits from mobile operators
January – bidding begins via an online auction site
February/March – bidders find out if they have won and the cost of the licence
May/June – launch of 4G services