September 10, 2014
As a finite and limited resource, spectrum is naturally a most valuable commodity for the ICT and the broadcasting communities. At Huawei, we have been eagerly awaiting the results of the work of the EU High Level Group on the future use of the much-coveted UHF band.
We welcome the publication of the report presented by Mr Pascal Lamy to the European Commission on 1 September: it is an important milestone to securing the long-term development of high-speed wireless broadband services in Europe and we are glad to see that there is broad agreement on this key issue.
We regret that stakeholders were not able to agree on a common way forward with regard to the deadline for releasing the 700 MHz band or on the approach to utilising the 470-694 MHz ranges. However, we fully understand the reasons for this lack of consensus. It is now up to the new Commission to continue the forward-looking initiatives to resolve these differences for the benefit of the European citizens.
At Huawei, we believe that the mobile broadband community requires decisive short-term action on the 700 MHz band, while taking a longer-term approach to allocations in the 470-694 MHz frequency range.
The 700 MHz band is key for the future development of mobile broadband networks and for achieving the Digital Agenda targets by 2020.
To drive the development of high-speed networks in Europe, it is important to allow member states that are ready to do so to implement mobile broadband networks in these frequencies starting from 2017/2018. At the same time, it is necessary to ensure that the other member states will follow within three years, in line with the principles of the Telecoms Single Market.
In the spirit of compromise, as first step, the Supplemental DownLink option could be a reasonable way forward on the 470-694 MHz band. It would allow for the co-existence of traditional broadcasting services in this frequency range with other downlink-only electronic communications services (i.e. base station to end user devices). This option could be used in cases where the demand for DTT at a national level is declining, as suggested by the “flexibility option” in the Lamy report.
With regard to the international discussions, some important administrations including the USA have already declared their support for primary allocations to mobile services of the 470-698 MHz range in the context of the ongoing preparation for the World Radio Conference 2015 (WRC-15). This will lead to technical harmonisation work in the future.
Huawei believes that Europe would benefit greatly from participating in this process.
With respect to the WRC-15, the EU should therefore consider supporting a co-primary mobile allocation in the 470-694 MHz ranges that would become effective after an agreed number of years.
This would ensure economies of scale for the longer term, allowing Europe to remain at the forefront of mobile communications development by providing necessary spectrum regulations with a sufficiently long lead time, while implementing a viable strategy for the long term.
– Alessandro Casagni
Alessandro Casagni is Head of EU Wireless Regulatory Policy, managing wireless regulation issues within Huawei Wireless Strategies and Business Development Department.
Mr Casagni holds a Master’s degree in electronic engineering from Rome University.
During the period 2007 to 2009, he worked at Huawei’s WiMAX and LTE Product Line departments with a special focus on European regulation matters.
Prior to joining Huawei, Mr Casagni held several marketing and technical positions with Mediaset broadcasting (2006 – 2007), Siemens mobile communications (2002 – 2006) and Accenture ICT consulting (2000 – 2002).Huawei Europe