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UK spectrum auction is great news for all 5G phone owners

(Pocket-lint) – The delayed UK spectrum auction has now been resolved and it’s great news for the country’s 5G rollout.

Ofcom has supplied Pocket-lint with the results and each of the four main networks in the UK have won considerable bands of spectrum. This will ensure that their 5G services can be expanded to more locations and offer more robust signals.

A significant number of mid and low-band frequencies were up for tender, with the low-band proving the most alluring (and expensive).

That’s because, while the mid-band spectrum is great for long distance signals, the low-band helps indoor and rural coverage.

EE, Hutchinson (Three) and Telefonica (O2) managed to win 2×10 MHz of paired frequency spectrum in the 700 MHz band each.

EE also secured 20MHz of supplementary downlink spectrum in the 700 MHz band.

EE, O2 and Vodafone each won 40 Hz in the 3.6 – 3.8 GHz band. Three has already got a signidicant holding in the mid-band frequencies.

The overall spectrum auction raised more than £1.3 billion for the UK government.

“Winning prized 700 MHz spectrum was particularly important to EE and Three. Both were lagging in low-band frequencies, which are best-suited to achieving wide-area, rural and in-building coverage,” we were told by director of consumer and connectivity at analyst firm CCS Insight, Kester Mann.

“The swift conclusion of the auction and the relatively modest overall spend is good news for UK 5G.”

The auction now enters an assignment phase were the providers can bid then negotiate for specific frequency positions. Once complete, they can then start to utilise them into their networks across the UK.

Writing by Rik Henderson.




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