UK 5G auction starts

Bidding has started for the latest batch of UK airwaves as networks look to offer next-generation 5G services and improve existing 4G.

The big four mobile networks (O2, Three, EE and Vodafone) will compete with one new player (Airspan Spectrum) to bid for a share of the newly released spectrum.  It follows months of legal challenges from both EE and Three, which have held up the auction.  The process is expected to last several weeks.

“We’re pressing ahead with the auction to make these airwaves available as quickly as possible,” said Philip Marnick, Ofcom’s spectrum group director, last month.  “This will benefit today’s mobile users by providing more capacity for mobile broadband use. It will also pave the way for 5G, allowing operators to launch the next generation of mobile technology.”

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