Qualcomm has confirmed the sale of UK spectrum holdings to mobile operators Three and Vodafone. Financial terms of the deal were not revealed, but Bloomberg has reported a figure of £200m.
The company’s UK subsidiary, Qualcomm UK Spectrum, will sell its entire holdings in the 1452-1492MHz range, with Vodafone and Three each buying 20MHz of the spectrum.
The move is not surprising as Qualcomm confirmed its intention to sell the stake in June, after the holding was mandated by the European Union as suitable for use for Supplemental Downlink services.
This will allow mobile operators to manage the increasing demand for data-intensive services such as video and apps.
The deal is subject to regulatory scrutiny from telecome regulator Ofcom before it will be finalised.
Vodafone said that the addition of the L-Band spectrum will complement its existing 800MHz holdings to help provide even faster 4G services.
“L-Band will complement Vodafone’s existing low frequency 800MHz spectrum which travels further and penetrates better through walls than other higher frequency 4G signals,” the company said.
“Over time, Vodafone intends to combine the spectrum with 800MHz using a new technology called 4G+, also referred to as Carrier Aggregation, to deliver theoretical peak download speeds up to three times faster than standard 4G.”
Three simply confirmed the news: “We can confirm that we have successfully bid for spectrum held by Qualcomm UK Spectrum, subject to conditions and Ofcom’s review of the proposed trade.
“We will make no further comment until Ofcom has announced the outcome of that review process and the transaction has completed.”
The move by Qualcomm to sell its spectrum holdings in the UK comes just a few weeks after the company announced plans to cut 4,500 jobs from its global workforce and is considering splitting the business into smaller units.
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