Spectrum management

We carry out strategic work in spectrum management, including making sufficient spectrum available for 5G, spectrum clearance, spectrum awards and many other on-going projects.

Our Annual Plan sets out the key spectrum-related work areas for the current year, as well as our broader programme of ongoing work. This includes:

  • Preparing for future awards of spectrum bands as they are cleared and released (including the award of the 700 MHz and 3.6 to 3.8 GHz bands)
  • Spectrum authorisation (including work on sharing)
  • Work to make sufficient spectrum available for 5G
  • Studies to inform future requirements for spectrum (such as mobile data, the satellite and space science sectors and fixed wireless uses)
  • Spectrum assurance and enforcement

You can read more about these projects below.

Strategic work

As the UK’s communications regulator, we have a role to play in enabling the development and rollout of 5G, and unlocking its benefits. We have provided an update on the actions we will be taking to facilitate 5G rollout in the UK.

We are preparing to make sufficient spectrum available for 5G. We are also playing a critical role in international discussions on bands for 5G in CEPT and ITU. In addition, we will be preparing for the next World Radiocommunications Conference in 2019 where spectrum bands for 5G are expected to be identified globally.

Our update on 5G spectrum in the UK (PDF, 2.9 MB) provides an update on international developments, and the programme of work that has been initiated with regards to making spectrum available for 5G.

We are seeking input to inform our programme of work to make 26 GHz available for 5G. Our call for inputs also sets out our thinking on which other bands we will prioritise for 5G.

On 7 December 2017, we responded to Government’s request that we review “the scope for the spectrum licensing regime to facilitate better 4G and 5G deployment at national, regional and local scales, including in-building usage”. See our review of the authorisation regime for spectrum access (PDF, 160.8 KB).

On 1 February 2019, we published a discussion paper on how wireless technology can help business to innovate and be more efficient.

For information on our ongoing 700MHz projects please click here.