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2 GHz band review

Review of the 2 GHz band (1980–2010 MHz and 2170–2200 MHz)

Overview and outcome

In 2019, we commenced a review of the 2 GHz band. This review was a result of increasing interest in the band for new applications including mobile satellite, wireless broadband and direct air-to-ground communications. In July 2020, the review progressed to the preliminary replanning stage with the release of a consultation on possible future options for the 2 GHz band.

The review concluded in January 2021 when we announced our decision to replan the band for mobile-satellite services, as follows:

  • 2 x 25 MHz (1980–2005 MHz and 2170–2195 MHz) for Australia-wide mobile-satellite services (MSS), with support for deployment of a complementary ground component (CGC) including direct air-to-ground communications services (DA2GC), where a licensee wishes to supplement its MSS.
  • 2 x 5 MHz (2005–2010 MHz and 2195–2200 MHz) for shared narrowband MSS including telemetry, short messaging, and low-data-rate services such as satellite IoT (internet of things) applications.

Following the conclusion of the review, we began implementing the replanning decision. The table below provides an outline of implementation activities and key milestones. Further details of each activity are provided in the following ‘History of the 2 GHz band’ section.



Review Embargo 23 and RALI FX21 to reflect replanning decisions and implementation activities

Mar 2021 (initial)

Jun 2022 (additional)

Review the Television Outside Broadcast Service (1980–2110 MHz and 2170–2300 MHz) Frequency Band Plan 2012 for inclusion of TOB transition timelines

Completed Jun 2022

Development of technical and licensing arrangements to support MSS narrowband use in 2005–2009 MHz and 2195–2200 MHz.

Completed Jul 2022

Review RALI FX3 7.2 GHz TOB arrangements to reflect current digital technologies used, including development of coordination arrangements to support the transition of 2 GHz TOB licensees

Consulted Jun 2022

Development of technical and regulatory arrangements to support MSS (including complementary ground component) use in 1980–2005/2170–2195 MHz.

Q1–2 2023

Development of framework for the allocation of licences in 1980–2005 MHz and 2170–2195 MHz bands. 



Allocation of MSS licences in 1980­–2005 and 2170–2195 MHz

2023–24 (to be determined through the annual FYSO process)


History of the 2 GHz band

The 2 GHz band was originally planned to support fixed point-to-point links as part of the 2.1 GHz (1900–2300 MHz) band.* In the early 2000s, fixed links were cleared from the band to support the introduction of mobile satellite services and 2.1 GHz spectrum licences. While the majority of fixed point-to-point links were cleared, the envisaged mobile satellite services did not eventuate.

In 2012, as an outcome of the review of the 2.5 GHz band and long-term arrangements for electronic news gathering, the 2 GHz band was replanned for television outside broadcast (TOB) services on an interim basis. To implement that decision we:

In August 2019, we commenced a review of the 2 GHz band with the release of a discussion paper that identified domestic and international considerations for future use of the band and invited comment on possible changes to planning arrangements.

In July 2020, the review progressed to the preliminary replanning stage with the release of a consultation paper on future options for the 2 GHz band.

In January 2021, we released an outcomes paper that announced our decision to replan the band for mobile-satellite services.

Implementing this decision requires us to conduct a range of regulatory and planning activities. To date, we have completed the following activities:

In August 2022, we updated RALI FX21 and Embargo 23 to reflect these transitional and licensing arrangements, including amending channel arrangements and coordination of TOB receivers. We also updated our business operating procedures with licensing procedures for 2 GHz narrowband mobile-satellite services in the 2005–2009 MHz and 2195–2200 MHz bands.

* See Radiocommunications Assignment and Licensing Instruction FX 3, microwave fixed services frequency coordination.  

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