Mobile operators have a scrap over 4G lobbying
Mobile operator, Everything Everywhere, has stepped up their lobbying ahead of an Ofcom decision on a lovely chunk of 4G spectrum. They've launched a campaign called "4GBritain" which they say is designed to stop Britain from falling behind other countries who already have 4G, leaving us ten-times slower than places like Germany and America.
This is not about the amount of money they can all make on it AT ALL.
“The UK has the highest levels of smartphone penetration and mobile commerce in Europe, and Britons deserve to have the best infrastructure in place to support this growth,” said Olaf Swantee, the firm's chief executive.
Of course, Everything Everywhere's rivals aren't buying this. They think that this is part of an effort to claim a licence to reuse its existing 1800MHz spectrum, which ultimately, would speed up rollout and could save it hundreds of millions of pounds. The rivals meanwhile, will have to bid on chunks of the 4G spectrum at auction.
Ofcom has already backtracked on plans to grant the reuse licence to Everything Everywhere after O2 and Vodafone kicked off about it all, throwing threats of legal action around over "illegal state aid". While everyone squabbles about it all, we all have to wait 'til the 8th of May for a final decision, which will inevitably be contested and leave us falling even further behind everyone else.
Everything Every have said: "4G will let people do more with their smartphones and tablets more quickly. It will support improved mobile services, productivity, commerce and ensure that many of the latest mobile devices work here in Britain. It will drive economic growth and create jobs, and unlock billions of pounds of private investment into the economy."
They added that it was "disappointing" that rivals "are falsely claiming that an as yet unlaunched website, being built to help stimulate awareness amongst the public of potential benefits of 4G, is in any way bad for consumers and the wider British economy".
Ofcom meanwhile have called on everyone to calm down and act in the best interests of consumers. Ha! The watchdog say: "Delays have been caused by legal challenges and threats of future litigation from various companies as they seek to defend their own commercial positions. While we recognise the need for companies to protect the interests of their shareholders, our role is to promote the interests of consumers."