It seems like we've been waiting forever for this damned 4G spectrum auction to happen so that everyone else, other than EE, can get on and offer the sweet, blazing speeds that only 4G can deliver. Finally, after delays, re-assessments, and legal threats, the rest of the networks can now shove their applications in and get the ball rolling, if they have £100,000 lying around that is.
Technically the application window opened today at 10am, and shut again at 4pm, today. A very short window indeed, but Ofcom's in a hurry. Along with their properly worded application, each network had to cough-up a £100,000 deposit too, not that the cost of a Ferrari is much to the well-heeled telecoms industry.
Ed Richards, CEO of Ofcom said:
"We have fired the starting gun on the 4G auction process. In the past year alone, mobile internet usage has doubled. The 4G auction will release crucial capacity to support future growth, helping to boost UK productivity, innovation and drive significant improvements to mobile broadband availability across the UK."
It's about freaking time too. Now, let's get the auction done, the 800MHz and 2.6GHz bands allocated and get the blazing networks up and running. EE's sitting pretty right now with the UK's only 4G network, but it certainly needs some competition to drive those pricy tariffs down. Roll on 4G for all. [Ofcom]