UK Launches Spectrum Forum: Real Wireless Chairs “Spectrum Needs” Group

Forum to develop national strategy for spectrum, including plans for 5G and IoT

London, 27 Sept 2013:  Real Wireless announced that Professor Simon Saunders will be chairing the working group on “Spectrum Applications and Demand” within the newly formed UK Spectrum Forum. The Forum, which was launched by Ed Vaizey, UK Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries, is an initiative to bring together the needs of industry, government and regulators to maximise the benefits of spectrum for the UK. This comes at a time of growing awareness of the importance of wireless spectrum to the UK, and will consider the relationship between TV and cellular, the needs of government, military and emergency services, developments in Internet of Things (IoT) and 5G mobile devices amongst others. Real Wireless is Europe’s leading expert advisory firm on wireless technology and strategy, and being chosen for this role reflects the company’s reputation for both technical expertise and independence in being able to reconcile the views of the different groups.

Spectrum is a critical element in economic growth and social activities: wireless systems, for which spectrum is essential, are at the heart of an increasing array of products and services across the whole economy. The wireless spectrum is a scarce resource, delivering £52 billion of value per year (1) to the British economy and balancing the needs of different users is a challenging task. In a recent study Real Wireless forecast a need for extra allocations of 200-300 MHz of licensed spectrum for mobile applications and 350 MHz of spectrum for Wi-Fi applications by 2020 to meet even a medium forecast of growing demand (2). This has to be achieved without compromising on the needs of other sectors such as transportation, emergency service and many others.

The Forum is Chaired by Professor Jim Norton, and has groups looking at both the demands for spectrum and the regulatory environment in UK and globally. Real Wireless Director Professor Simon Saunders will be chairing the group considering applications and the future requirements. The scope of this group includes: what the new technologies and applications will be and how they will be used; what these mean for spectrum demand; what needs to be done to ensure adequate and appropriate availability of spectrum.

Professor Saunders commented, “Wireless is an essential part of our daily life and global economy. Whether it is voice phone calls, broadband data, emergency services or M2M those all rely on enough of the right spectrum being available; but as consumers use more services and as new technology advances there is a pressing demand for more spectrum. We have seen from the difficulties of digital switchover or the debate on the balance of licensed and licence-exempt spectrum that these decisions are not easy, and as we consider the demands of emergency services and military then they become even harder. And yet if the UK is to progress with 5G or to seize the opportunities presented by M2M and IoT then the need for a spectrum strategy that reconciles these different desires is critical. Real Wireless is proud to have been asked by the Spectrum Forum to chair this group and to support its initiative in this way”.

Real Wireless is Europe’s leading specialist independent wireless advisory firm.  Real Wireless delivers independent, informed and innovative consultancy based on a deep understanding of the physics and engineering implications associated with wireless technologies, coupled with real-world planning and deployment experience.

Real wireless has published a number of detailed reports on spectrum and policy, including work on White Space  and “Techniques for increasing the capacity of wireless broadband networks: UK, 2012-2030″, March 2012, a major study on the relative impacts of spectrum, technology and small cells on future mobile capacity.  The company also performed the analysis of the 800MHz “digital dividend” LTE band to advise OFCOM on the cost of extending an 800 MHz mobile broadband coverage obligation for the United Kingdom.



Twitter:  #spectrumfuture    @real_wireless

For more details:

Rupert Baines
CMO Real Wireless
+44 7968 481 831

How much mobile spectrum will the UK need by 2030?

Tricky question. The answer depends on many demand, technology and economic factors. Bu that’s exactly what Ofcom asked us to do earlier this year.
Ofcom is preparing UK positions and contributions leading to ITU-R’s World Radio Conference 2015 (which actually might occur in 2016, but that’s another story)
The WRC-15 agenda includes an Agenda Item 1.1 which considers potential additional mobile spectrum allocations
In support of this Ofcom wanted to consider future demand to 2030 for UK “mobile” spectrum based on an established ITU-R estimation methodology, adapted in the context of the UK.
“Mobile” here includes both licensed and licence-exempt spectrum to support demand from both personal device and other mobile broadband applications including M2M. So that includes existing 3G and LTE systems, future LTE-Advanced, 5G, current and future Wi-Fi and potentially technologies which we don’t even have a name for yet. 

Download and read the full report and appendices alongside Ofcom’s wider thinking on these matters.

Small Cells Global Congress – 5-6 November 2013

Event: Small Cells Global Congress
Date: 5- 6 November 2013 
Venue: Berlin, Germany
What: Presenting on Wednesday 6th November: “Meeting the challenges and capitalising on the opportunities of urban small cell deployment”
Chair the afternoon on Tuesday 5th in the small cells track
Panel on Wednesday 6th – 10:05 Small Cell Systems in the Enterprise, Beyond Coverage & Capacity