Europe to Approve Use of 2Ghz Spectrum for LTE Services
Published on: 5th Nov 2012
Note -- this news article is more than a year old.
By: Ian Mansfield
The European Commission has decided to open up the 2Ghz band which is currently reserved for UMTS based 3G networks to be reused for LTE based 4G services.
The Decision makes it mandatory for Member States to open the relevant spectrum by July 2014 at the latest, and lays down harmonised technical conditions to allow coexistence between different technologies.
On this basis the EU said that it will have released up to twice the amount of spectrum for high speed wireless broadband as in the United States, namely around 1000 MHz.
European Commission Vice President Neelie Kroes said: "This extra spectrum for 4G in Europe means we can better meet the changing and growing demand for broadband. I want to see Member States acting swiftly to change existing licenses. We all win from faster wireless connections in Europe."
The Decision enforces the harmonised liberalisation of the 2 GHz band (1920-1980 MHz paired with 2110-2170 MHz) in all Member States, avoiding internal market fragmentation in the future use of this band.
The paired terrestrial 2 GHz band has been traditionally used by UMTS communications (3G networks) as a result of the so-called UMTS Decision adopted in 1999, which launched the coordinated and progressive introduction of UMTS across the EU by 1 January 2002.
The Commission is also considering a follow-up measure on the unpaired terrestrial 2 GHz spectrum (1900-1920 MHz and 2010-2025 MHz) which is currently allocated to use by UMTS networks but remains unused throughout the EU. In this regard, the Commission has already issued a Mandate to CEPT to study suitable applications and develop appropriate technical conditions and sharing arrangements.