Communications regulator Ofcom has begun a consultation on the future use of spectrum bands 600Mhz and 700Mhz, and suggests that the UK reserves them for mobile broadband needs.Formally, it is called Securing long term benefits from scarce spectrum resources - A strategy for UHF bands IV and V published on 29 March, with responses due by 7 June. It observes:
Although the spectrum could be used for a wide range of services, including digital terrestrial television (DTT), emergency services and applications using white space devices, Ofcom indicates that its likely to be reserved for mobile broadband due to the expectation that there is going to be a rapid growth in demand for capacity.
It estimates that under a mid-level growth scenario, mobile data capacity demand will experience an 80 fold increase between 2012 and 2030.
... there is an unprecedented growth in the demand for mobile broadband capacity.
... the need for a long term strategic approach which can help both:
Matching the future supply of spectrum with demand for services capable of delivering significant benefits to citizens and consumers; and
Retaining sufficient flexibility to respond to uncertain future service, market and international harmonisation developments.
Responses will be published on the OFCOM web site in the summer.