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New Zealand's 2degrees Seeks Delay in Radio Spectrum Sale

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New Zealand's smallest mobile network, 2degrees is calling on the government to leave an unsold block of radio spectrum available for future use.

During the recent auction, each of the three networks was allowed to bid for 2x15 MHz, and while Vodafone and Telecom took their full allocation, 2degrees chose to take just 2x10Mhz. That left an unsold block of 2x5Mhz on the table, that can now be sold to either of the two other mobile networks.

However, 2degrees is now trying to argue that any possible sale be delayed until the results of a telecoms market review are published.

"Spectrum is the motorway for mobile operators, and in the next few years that motorway will be built on 1800MHz spectrum, which all mobile operators already own. There are no mobile devices or networks using 700MHz that can be deployed in New Zealand right now, so there's no pressing consumer need to sell the remaining portion of that band," says Mr Sherriff.

Mr Sherriff says it would be easy to make the wrong call now.

Mr Sherriff says he will write to Communications Minister Amy Adams asking her to put the 700MHz on the shelf -- and let the market review provide insights that deliver more for consumers.

It's worth noting that 2degrees could have bought the spectrum itself, and knew that failure to do so would leave it open to being bought by its rivals.

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Tags: 2degrees  radio spectrum  New Zealand