ITSPA, the trade body for the next generation communications industry has broadly welcomed Ofcom’s decision to limit the amount of mobile spectrum that companies can win in the upcoming spectrum auction.
Ofcom has determined that by 2020 there will be a 37% ceiling on all useable mobile spectrum that one operator can control. ITSPA Chair Eli Katz stated “Overall, we are pleased that Ofcom has listened to some of the concerns of industry and adjusted their plans according to the changing communications landscape. We believe this is a positive step to ensure that the UK mobile market remains competitive and open to innovation”.
ITSPA had responded to Ofcom’s spectrum consultation in February highlighting the need to resolve the current imbalance between the amount of spectrum being held by each of the four major mobile network operators in the UK. ITSPA agreed with Ofcom’s position that BT/EE should not bid for 2.3GHz spectrum and believe that an overall cap on spectrum is necessary to ensure effective competition.
Eli Katz added “Whilst we welcome the developments as a positive move, we still believe there is a need to review the current wholesale access remedies to support the mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) market. This is a fledgling sector that needs more support to ensure the wider mobile market is vibrant and open to disruption”.