UK Awards More Wireless Frequencies


The UK Office of Communications, or Ofcom, said Wednesday that it has awarded 12 Wireless Telegraphy Act licences for the frequencies 1781.7-1785MHz paired with 1876.7-1880MHz as a result of its first spectrum auction. British Telecommunications paid GBP275,112 for a license, Cable & Wireless U.K. (England) paid GBP51,002, COLT Mobile Telecommunications paid GBP1,513,218, and O2 (U.K.) paid GBP209,888. Following payment of the full licence fees by the winning bidders, the awards are effective immediately, Ofcom said.

The licences are technology neutral, which means that the licensees have the freedom to use the spectrum how they wish, within certain technical limits. The licences are for a total of 6.6MHz of spectrum to be used on a low-power basis. Possible uses include private GSM mobile phone networks in office buildings or campuses.

Multiple licences were awarded to encourage the development of a range of new and innovative competitive services, Ofcom said. The total amount of the licence fees paid was GBP3.8 million, Ofcom said. Two bidders – Orange Personal Communications (bid GBP50,000) and Zynetix (bid GBP50,000) – were not awarded licences because they were outbid in the auction process.