Ofcom has published a proposal to liberalise all UK mobile licences in the 900MHz, 1800MHz and 2100MHz bands. This would let network operators deploy 4G technology on frequencies that had originally just been licensed for 2G or 3G services.
In addition, it’s proposing that base stations would be allowed to transmit at increased power on 900MHz frequencies.
Last year, Everything Everywhere (now EE) was given permission to use some of its 1800MHz frequencies to run 4G services.
The consultation document from Ofcom notes “We consider that the proposed licence variations to permit 4G use are likely to result in consumer benefits over time.”
It also points out that doubling the transmission power of 900MHz base stations, which is what the proposed 3dB increase effectively means, would put them in line with 2100MHz 3G base stations.
The consultation closes on 29th March 2013, with Ofcom expected to publish its decision by the summer.
[Consultation document (pdf)]