Ofcom opens consultation on the digital dividend

Whist groups lobby for HDTV terrestrial spectrum the broadcast regulator Ofcom has published its Digital Dividend Review for public consultation. The Review sets out Ofcom’s proposals for the most effective use of the frequencies (470-862 MHz) released by analogue switch-off between 2008-2012.
It has identified many possible uses of the releases frequencies including: local DTT services, HDTV, mobile TV, mobile voice and data communications, broadband wireless applications, low-power wireless applications, public safety services, etc and
does not believe that it is best placed to decide which services should or should not have access to the spectrum. Ofcom has proposed to offer licenses that would be tradeable and liberalised to allow users the flexibility to decide what technology to use, what services to offer, and to change their use of the spectrum over time.
Ofcom also proposes to award the frequencies by auction. The consultation seeks public views on a number of different auction designs. It is likely that the auction will be held towards the end of 2008, subject to the outcome of this consultation.
The consultation closes on 20 March 2007.
Source: Ofcom website
Item added: 27th December 2006