This document is our long term strategy to address the increasing use of data by mobile devices like smartphones, tablets and laptops. UK citizens and consumers already benefit considerably from the use of these devices and the data traffic they consume is expected to grow significantly in the future.
There are a number of ways to increase the capacity of mobile networks to deal with this growth, such as more efficient technology and greater use of small cells, but use of additional spectrum is likely to be part of the solution. We are already preparing to award suitable spectrum in the 2.3 GHz and 3.4 GHz bands and are today consulting on a proposal to release the 700 MHz band for mobile use. However, the potential scale of the future challenge, the potential benefits that could be achieved by meeting it, and the long lead times normally associated with changing spectrum use, mean that developing a long term strategy is important.
This document therefore identifies additional spectrum bands for potential mobile use and prioritises our efforts on these. It describes what we plan to do to better understand the possibilities for each band, and, where appropriate, ensure there is an option for future mobile use.
We will take forward the band-specific actions identified in this document and continue to develop our understanding of future demand and technology trends. We will update and refine our strategy periodically as necessary.
There are links between this work and two other documents published today:
The full document is available below