4G ready to roll, but could cause interference problems

23 February 2012

A man using 4G, yesterday

Nearly a million homes in the UK will need to have filters installed to prevent TV interference from 4G mobile signals, which will cost a tidy £108m to sort out.

Mercifully, these costs will be met by the winner of a spectrum auction later this year, where consultations are underway to see hold the spectrum will be used by mobile operators once airwaves are freed when the digital switchover finally resolves.

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) told the BBC that the number of homes affected was likely to be in the 900,000 bracket, and that homes within range of  transmitter towers will automatically have a filter issued. If the filter doesn't work, then you'll get a switch to satellite or cable, also covered in cost by the mobile operator.

Culture Minister Ed Vaizey says: "Next-generation mobile services are essential for economic growth. They will bring an estimated benefit of £2-3bn to the UK economy. There will be some interference when 4G services are rolled out but we will have the solutions in place to eliminate the disruption to television viewers."

Despite the idea that we won't get 4G until 2015, Everything Everywhere is trying to push ahead with LTE connections in 2012.  CEO Olaf Swantee, says: “Everything Everywhere’s vision is to launch 4G for Britain as soon as possible, and the roll out of 3.5G HSPA+ and our 4G trials across Britain are major steps towards delivering on that promise.”

“There is a great opportunity for the UK to have the 21st Century network that it so deserves, putting the nation on a level playing field with other parts of Europe, the USA and Asia.”

TOPICS:   Technology   TV   Broadband


  • Mike H.
    All those frequencies, it's enough to make your head hurt. What do you mean, it does?
  • Quagmire
    Well it'll do more than just interfere with tv's. I run a sound and lighting company and own several wireless products (mics, monitors etc etc.) nearly 90% of these will be obsolete and unuse-able because they are on the frequencies which are being sold for 4g! Lovely. It's costing me thousands of pounds to replace my equipment without a solitary penny coming from the government (who will pocket millions from the sale) to help me replace it all. It is scandalous to say the least! Look in to that bitterwallet team and see if there's anything i can do because it's really really unfair tbh! And i'm not the only one in the same boat!
  • lumoruk
    So Freesat or Freeview HD then?
  • Phil76
    http://www.shareview.co.uk/clients/Ofcom/Default.htm Looks like you've missed the boat Quagmire - but if you're in the industry weren't you contacted about this a long time ago?
  • Mark H.
    @ Quagmire Sounds like you're using dodgy equipment to me.
  • Quagmire
    @Mark H - Wrong mate, completely wrong. Legitimate goods i.e shure, sennheiser and the like which work on the same frequency spectrum as 4g will be on!
  • Quagmire
    @ phil76 That scheme was only for eligible companies (which i am not) who hold a licence for their equipment which is not required for my line of work! So i did know about it but it is irrelevent to me!
  • Mustapha S.
    Quagmire, thinly veiled "I run a mobile disco van" post imo.
  • stevieboy
    Where the hell does all the millions from the sale of 'spectrum' go? does it go to bombing goat herders in far away lands? or do the politicians get to keep it somehow for themselves? would be nice if that money was spent on the British public, healthcare services, housing & such like, because none of the other taxes seem to be spent on where it matters.

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