UK digital dividend auction announced

Ofcom has set out detailed proposals for how it will release spectrum that will be freed up as a result of the switchover to digital television.

Ofcom plans to make 128 MHz of cleared spectrum available on a UK-wide basis, holding an auction in 2009. The spectrum will be freed up for new uses in phases, as digital switchover proceeds between now and 2012.

The spectrum, which is in the UHF band, is currently used for the delivery of TV channels using analogue technology. Signals transmitted in these bands can travel over large distances and carry a large amount of information. These characteristics make the spectrum suitable for a range of services, including ultra-fast mobile broadband, mobile television and more digital television services, in standard or high definition.

The licences would be tradable and flexible to allow users to determine the technology and services they provide and to change the use of the airwaves as new technologies and services emerge.

Image: Ofcom's London HQ


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