The UK Spectrum Policy Forum, part of TechUK, is currently considering the future of spectrum authorisation – and how this needs to change to reflect the different ways in which spectrum is used and demanded. Ensuring that the assignment of radio spectrum delivers technical, economic and social benefits is imperative for Government. For the last two decades auctions have been the go-to mechanism for large spectrum awards, but other award mechanisms are available (and are already used).
Will any of those assignment mechanisms suit a future where frequencies are increasingly shared? For example:
- Under plans for the 26GHz band, or Ofcom’s proposed local access licensing for innovation, or the deployment of Dynamic Spectrum Access?
- Should we revert to the basic provision of General Authorisation, or do parameters such as quality of service still clearly point to the need for Individual Authorisation?
Tony Lavender and Tim Miller presented as part of a workshop on future mechanisms for authorisation of spectrum use, considering the role of existing mechanisms and drawing out issues that require further examination.