Bidding for 5G Spectrum auction has started in the UK as operators look to kickstart next-generation 5G services and improve existing 4G networks.
The bidding process is expected to last several weeks. The bidding process follows months of legal challenges from both EE and Three, which have held up the auction.
“We’re pressing ahead with the auction to make these airwaves available as quickly as possible,” said Philip Marnick, Ofcom’s spectrum group director, last month.
“This will benefit today’s mobile users by providing more capacity for mobile broadband use. It will also pave the way for 5G, allowing operators to launch the next generation of mobile technology.”
The main four mobile operators will compete with one new player to bid for a share of the newly released spectrum. Alongside O2, Three, EE and Vodafone, one new player – Airspan Spectrum Holdings is also competing for the spectrum.
Airspan Spectrum Holdings, which has a US parent company, recently purchased a large chunk of Irish mobile spectrum and there are speculations that it has ambitious plans for Europe expansion.