Everything Everywhere (EE), the joint venture parent company of UK mobile operators Orange UK and T-Mobile UK, has threatened legal action over the government’s proposed auction of next generation wireless spectrum, British broadsheet The Guardian reports. The JV is understood to have raised issue with the UK’s new government altering an initial agreement made with the country’s mobile operators that would have seen rival cellcos O2 UK and Vodafone UK hand back a portion of spectrum they already hold in the 900MHz band in return for being allowed to bid for spectrum in the 800MHz and 2600MHz bands. EE has written to the communications minister Ed Vaizey asking him to either reconsider the matter or provide additional information to address the company’s concerns.
The spectrum auction, which was originally expected to take place by the end of this year but has since been pushed back to next year, is likely to raise around GBP5 billion (USD7.69 billion) for the government. In April 2010, proposals for the spectrum auction were sent from the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) to telecoms regulator Ofcom, detailing plans for several spectrum bands including 800MHz, 900MHz, 1800MHz, 2100MHz and 2600MHz.