2 August 2006
ACMA reduces prices for wireless access spectrum
The Australian Communications and Media Authority has reduced the reserve prices for spectrum in the 3.4 GHz band to encourage take up of the spectrum to provide services to the community.
‘The spectrum is suitable for the delivery of wireless local loop services and wireless broadband internet access,’ said Giles Tanner, General Manager of ACMA’s Inputs to Industry Division. ‘There is 35 MHz of spectrum available in Brisbane which provides a significant opportunity for new wireless internet service providers to enter the market. There is also spectrum available in Hobart, Launceston, and Sydney.’
ACMA recently reviewed the 3.4 GHz band and reserve prices are being lowered by as much as 75 per cent in an effort to encourage use.
These licences were passed in at auction in 2000 and the new prices reflect the shorter terms remaining on the licences and subsequent changes in market conditions.
Applications for the next allocation round close at 11 am on 13 September 2006. Under the allocation process, licences may be allocated for the reserve price if there is only one applicant. An auction is triggered only if there are two or more applicants for a licence.
Further details are available on the ACMA website.
Media contact: Donald Robertson, ACMA Media Manager on (02) 9334 7980.
Previous allocations in the 3.4 GHz band
Four hundred and eighty two spectrum licences in the 3.4 GHz band were auctioned in October 2000 and most were sold. The unsold lots were offered again in 2002, and since 2004 have been offered on a rolling quarterly auction program. Currently only fifteen 3.5 MHz lots remain unallocated, of which ten are in Brisbane.
The 3.4 GHz bands are currently being used in Australian and other countries for wireless local loop (WLL) services to provide an alternative to wireline telephony and data services. WLL is also called Fixed Wireless Access (FWA) in some countries. The spectrum is suitable for fixed point-to-point services and broadband internet-protocol (IP) based communications.
The spectrum will be allocated as technology-flexible spectrum licences that can be used for virtually any type of service permitted by the technical framework, and depending on the amount of spectrum acquired at auction. The licences expire 13 December 2015.
Spectrum licences are a tradeable, technology flexible spectrum access right for a fixed non-renewable term. This means that the licence is not limited to any particular technology, system or service. Instead of authorising the use of a specific radiocommunications device at a fixed site, spectrum licences give licensees the freedom to deploy devices anywhere within their licence area, provided that the devices are compatible with the core conditions of the licence and the technical framework for the bands within which the spectrum sits.