Ofcom has released its second proposal for the auction of 4G spectrum holdings in an attempt to solve numerous complaints raised by mobile operators when it first unveiled its plans in March 2011.
Chief among the revisions is the removal of the guarantee of a portion of spectrum for Everything Everywhere in the sub 1Ghz range, with Ofcom explaining that after further analysis it believes this is unnecessary.
"We take greater account of the large amount of 1,800MHz spectrum that Everything Everywhere holds, which is, in our view, likely to enable it to have a sufficient quality of coverage and capacity," it said.
"[It also provides] it with a large bandwidth of spectrum suitable for LTE and the possibility to offer highest peak speed in both the near and longer term."
This had been one of the most contentious issues affecting the previous proposals, with O2 threatening legal action against the move.
However, the proposal does put forward a move to ensure Three, or another operator, gains access to a portion of the 4G spectrum in order to guarantee there is a healthy level of competition for LTE services.
"We consider there is a material risk there will be fewer than four credible national wholesalers of mobile services in the future if neither Hutchison 3G UK (H3G) [Three's owner] nor a new entrant were to acquire at least a minimum amount of spectrum in the auction," it said.
V3 contacted Everything Everywhere, O2 and Three for comment on the changes proposed by Ofcom but had received no replies at the time of publication.
A spokesperson for Vodafone said the firm welcomed the revised document but said it still had some question marks over the finer point of the proposals.
"Ofcom has produced a lengthy document and we need to understand the regulator's rationale for protecting a fourth operator, but it has made significant steps towards bringing 4G services to this country," it said.
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