Ofcom has given the green light to MNOs, including O2 and Vodafone, to reuse 2G and 3G spectrum for 4G services.
Ofcom said that networks can reuse spectrum for 4G services, following requests by 3 and Vodafone for the regulator to allow LTE services in the 900MHz, 1800MHz and 2100MHz frequency bands.
Ofcom’s decision to relax its rules will be welcome news for O2 and Vodafone, as it means they will not have to formally apply to use their existing resources for 4G.
“This decision delivers a long standing objective to liberalise all mobile licences so as to remove the regulatory barriers to deployment of the latest available mobile technology,” Ofcom said. “Even though operators may not seek to deploy 4G services in the newly liberalised bands in the immediate future, the interests of consumers will be served by the fact that these bands have been liberalised now, ahead of a market led transition to their use for 4G technology in future. As a result, operators can plan and implement a transition to 4G technology in these bands without having to engage in a further regulatory process.”