Consultation: Award of the 700 MHz and 3.6-3.8 GHz spectrum bands

  • Start: 18 December 2018
  • Status: Closed
  • End: 12 March 2019

We manage the airwaves – or spectrum – used by all wireless devices, including mobile phones. Reliable mobile services have become essential to how people live and work across the UK, and mobile phone networks must keep pace with the growing needs for capacity and for coverage. This is a priority for us. We want to see coverage of good quality mobile broadband from a choice of providers, wherever people live, work and travel.

In this document, we set out proposals for an award of spectrum to enable the industry to provide services with greater capacity and wider coverage, and to pave the way for companies to take advantage of new wireless technologies, including 5G – the next generation of mobile technology. Importantly, we are proposing to provide strong incentives for the companies which participate in the award to invest in providing better quality services in rural areas, furthering our ambition to achieve comprehensive mobile coverage for people right across the UK.

Improving mobile coverage

Alongside this consultation, we have published a document which provides an overview of all the steps we are taking to improve mobile coverage (PDF, 180.1 KB).

Update 11 June 2019: revised proposals on defragmentation of the 3.4-3.8 GHz band

On 11 June 2019, we published a consultation with revised proposals to facilitate defragmentation of the 3.4-3.8 GHz band through the 700 MHz and 3.6-3.8 GHz award. This consultation closes on 10 July.

A number of footnotes were missing on page 172 of the consultation document. We have updated the document to include these.

Main documents

Supporting documents

Letter from DCMS to Ofcom
(PDF File, 190.7 KB)
Letter from Ofcom to DCMS
(PDF File, 144.4 KB)
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Responder name Type
Arqiva (PDF File, 1.2 MB) Organisation
BBC (PDF File, 210.4 KB) Organisation
BT-EE (PDF File, 1.4 MB) Organisation
Communications Consumer Panel (PDF File, 134.3 KB) Organisation
Consumer Council for Northern Ireland (PDF File, 468.7 KB) Organisation
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