No UK 4G auction until 2013
24 Jul 2012
Services not expected in Britain until the end of next year
We are guessing this is supposed to be a good news story about 4G, but the bottom line is there are unlikely to be any 4G services in the UK until the end of next year.
That's according to Ofcom, which has offered its latest statement on the auction and the 4G process. Originally, the sale was planned for the end of 2012, that in itself a delay from earlier this year. That's it, there's not a lot we can do about it if Ofcom says 'no'.
So let's focus on the positives, which is an auction of three quarters of the mobile spectrum in use today, with mobile broadband rolled out to at least 98% of people in villages, towns and cities across the UK - and at massively increased speeds for some. That's down to the use of two spectrum bands, one faster than the other, but both guaranteeing the coverage.
Ofcom chief executive Ed Richards said: 'The 4G auction has been designed to deliver the maximum possible benefit to consumers and citizens across the UK.
'As a direct result of the measures Ofcom is introducing, consumers will be able to surf the web, stream videos and download email attachments on their mobile device from almost every home in the UK.'
So it should be worth it when it finally arrives. It's just a shame we have to wait so long. The new schedule is dependent on statutory consultation and of course, no more legal wrangling from the network. Although you suspect all will be very keen to get the process moving as quickly and painlessly as possible.
Editor: Chris Barraclough