View all newsletters
Receive our newsletter - data, insights and analysis delivered to you
  1. Technology
  2. Networks
October 11, 2013

Ofcom proposes five times hike in mobile spectrum licensing fees

Latest price hike mirrors market value derived from other European countries.

By CBR Staff Writer

UK Mobile operators have to pay about five times the existing amount in spectrum licensing fees to the government, amidst concern that the rise in price will be passed on to the consumers and obstruct 4G investment.

The UK telecoms regulator said that the latest price hike mirrors market value.

As per the latest proposals, the annual licence fees will now be £309m, up from the existing annual total of about £64.4m, which will apply to spectrum that was offered by the government in the early existence of the mobile phone industry.

Ofcom’s 900 MHz and 1800 MHz spectrum bands, currently used by mobile network operators, to offer services including voice calls, 3G and some 4G.

Ofcom’s proposals come after Britain raised below £2.34bn in a 4G spectrum auction for airwaves to transmit high-speed mobile Internet traffic.

The latest move by Ofcom may be opposed by mobile networks including Vodafone, EE, O2 and Three, which have earlier threatened the telecoms regulator with suits over past decisions.

Vodafone said in a statement that it was disappointed that Ofcom is proposing a 430% increase in the fees which the company pays for the existing spectrum at a time when it is investing more than ever in vital national digital infrastructure.

Content from our partners
Scan and deliver
GenAI cybersecurity: "A super-human analyst, with a brain the size of a planet."
Cloud, AI, and cyber security – highlights from DTX Manchester

"The regulator should be encouraging such private sector investment in infrastructure and new services like 4G, which will benefit consumers, businesses and the wider British economy for many years to come," Vodafone said.

Upon the implementation of the new prices, Vodafone and O2’s individual fees would rise from £15.6m to £83.1m, while EE will have to pay £107.1m, Three to shell out £35.7m.

The European Union is also working on reducing roaming costs in a bid to trim down the so-called ‘bill shock.

Websites in our network
Select and enter your corporate email address Tech Monitor's research, insight and analysis examines the frontiers of digital transformation to help tech leaders navigate the future. Our Changelog newsletter delivers our best work to your inbox every week.
  • CIO
  • CTO
  • CISO
  • CSO
  • CFO
  • CDO
  • CEO
  • Architect Founder
  • MD
  • Director
  • Manager
  • Other
Visit our privacy policy for more information about our services, how Progressive Media Investments may use, process and share your personal data, including information on your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.