In August, Ofcom announced that 4G (fourth-generation wireless) was coming to the UK 12 to 18 months ahead of schedule by virtue of the mobile phone operator Everything Everywhere (EE) being given the nod to use its existing frequencies for 4G.
It was a reasoned and logical decision but one that also upset the other mobile providers because they do not have the frequencies to do the same and would be hobbled until the conclusion of the scheduled 4G auction. An auction timetabled for conclusion in late 2013.
4G Access Across The Board
That decision threw the cat in amongst the pigeons with threat of legal action, blah blah, from the other mobile operators because of the competitive advantage EE would gain by Ofcom’s decision.
Today, Ofcom are chairing a meeting (“peace talks”) between it and all of the major mobile phone operators to stay the hand of the lawyers.
Significantly it seems that Ofcom have good news to placate the mobile operators. The date of the proposed auction can only be advanced, from January, by a couple of weeks but Ofcom is reporting that significant progress has been made to clear the wireless spectrum (currently used by analogue TV and air traffic control) much earlier than the end of 2013 as was expected.
There will be a lot more news later today, I’m sure, after the meeting. Watch this space.
Meanwhile, Rory Cellan-Jones in his blog at the Beeb comments:
All in all, Ofcom believes that EE's period of being the only 4G game in town will shrink from as much as 18 months to as little as six months. O2 in particular will want to see the fine print before telling its masters at Telefonica that this deal is acceptable. But it seems likely that they will sign up rather than risk being seen as the company which delayed the arrival of a vital technology for the UK.
And if it does all work out, Ofcom will be entitled to feel just a little smug. By taking a risk with its EE ruling, it will have forced the whole mobile industry to focus on a faster transition to 4G.
Latest Computer Chips to Connect Items from Credit Cards & Fridges.
The computer chip maker Arm Holdings has launched a new chip that uses so little power and is so small that it will drive the so-called "internet of things".
Raspberry Pi, Exciting New Computer, On Sale For £22
A great day for geeks and parents alike! The Raspberry Pi, an exciting new, bare-bones, low-cost computer created by volunteers mostly drawn from academia and the UK tech industry, has at last gone on sale with the price tag of only £22. The size of a credit card but with an impressive number of connectors the Pi boots to show an impressive GUI.
Nano-laser Breakthrough With Optical Computing Implications
University of California, San Diego: researchers have built the smallest room-temperature nanolaser to date. It works at the colours of light used in telecommunications and at room temperature.
The advance, published in the journal Nature is a breakthrough in the relentless research toward faster computers and optical computing.
Symantec Advises Users Stop Using pcAnywhere Immediately!
Computer security firm Symantec is advising customers to stop using all current versions of its pcAnywhere software.
Symantec advise that users of all version of pcAnywhere are at risk and they should stop using it immediate effect.