EE's rivals set to launch 4G next summer

EE: marked the launch of its 4G services with a party at Battersea Power Station
EE: marked the launch of its 4G services with a party at Battersea Power Station

The UK is set to get widespread 4G services in May and June next year, according to a timetable published for the spectrum auction process to be managed by the telecoms regulator Ofcom.

It has set the provisional date of the 11 December for submission of applications by prospective bidders. The bidding begins in January, via an online auction site, with bidders finding out whether they have won or not in February or March.

Ofcom has also launched a new 4G consumer page, with information and advice on 4G and the auction.

The reserve price set by Ofcom values the spectrum at least £1.3bn.

Ofcom claimed the auction would be the largest-ever sale of mobile airwaves in the UK and will almost double the amount of airwaves available to smartphones and tablets that currently use 3G.

The publication of the timetable comes after the regulator and telecoms operators put aside their differences over the auction process for 4G.

O2, Vodafone and Three had threatened Ofcom with legal action after the regulator allowed EE to use its existing spectrum to roll out 4G services in October, ahead of the auction.

Ed Richards, chief executive of Ofcom, said: "Today marks an important shift from preparation to the delivery of the auction, which will see widespread 4G mobile services from a range of providers.

"The entire industry is now focused on the auction itself, with a shared goal of delivering new and improved mobile services for consumers."

EE rolled out the UK's first 4G service on 30 October, backed with a major marketing assault.


Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus
Brand Republic Jobs

subscribe now


Virgin, Baileys and Camelot join the line-up at Media360
MasterCard renews Rugby World Cup sponsorship to push cashless message
Lynx unleashes £9m 'Peace invasion' campaign
Social Brands 100 Youth: Pizza Hut most social youth brand in UK
Cheryl Cole is wild and arresting in new L'Oreal work
Morrisons told not to show alcohol ads during YouTube nursery rhymes
O2 head of brand Shadi Halliwell departs after 23 years at company in restructure
Tesco hit by further sales decline as it turns to digital Clubcard and social network
Branding guru Wally Olins dies aged 83
Duracell short film captures epic Transatlantic voyage
Ash runs Tinder experiment to show smokers are less desirable to opposite sex
British Airways teams up with Gerry Cottle Jnr for summer of rooftop film screenings
Arklu says 'girls can be superheroes too' with doll design competition
Coke enters squash market with Oasis Mighty Drops
Virgin Galactic signs up Land Rover as space flight sponsor
Motorola marketer Andrew Morley departs as Google gears up for sale to Lenovo
US Airways apologises after tweeting obscene image at a customer
Mumsnet admits users' emails and passwords accessed via Heartbleed bug backs 'rubbish' mobile app with TV ad
Powerade launches global World Cup campaign
Subway considers taking fast food to fast lane with F1 sponsorship
Burberry's flagship Shanghai store facade responds to weather changes
Ikea splurges 'grey' Belgium with colour
Grim outlook for Tesco boss Philip Clarke ahead of expected profits fall
Thomson to create first crowd-sourced wedding decided by Facebook fans
Currency wars meets origami in Alpari FX trading ad campaign
Amazon rumoured to launch 3D smartphone in September
Facebook to allow European users to store and transfer money on site, claims report
Unilever pilots multi-brand advertising with YouTube beauty channel
Lego, Coca-Cola, Net-a-Porter, Bitcoin and AOL: the digitally creative brands