Seven operators have submitted bids in the first round of the UK’s 4G auction, which started this week.
The bidders are Everything Everywhere, PCCW subsidiary HKT UK, Hutchison 3G UK, MLL Telecom, BT subsidiary Niche Spectrum Ventures, Telefonica UK, and Vodafone, regulator Ofcom has revealed.
The carriers are competing for 28 lots of spectrum in the 800-MHz and 2.6-GHz frequencies in an auction that will cover several rounds over a number of weeks. Ofcom predicts the first commercial services will commence in the spring or summer.
Ofcom chief, Ed Richards, hailed the opening of the sale as a “significant milestone” for the UK communications sector, noting it will “release the essential raw material for the next wave of mobile digital services.”