Europe’s national regulators tend to like having at least four mobile network operators (MNOs). The more infrastructure competition there is, they reason, the more consumers are likely to benefit from lower prices and service innovation.
Ofcom, the UK telecoms regulator, bent over backwards to make sure 4G spectrum auction rules would result in at least four MNOs each having enough wireless frequencies to offer what it believes would be a “viable” high-speed data service nationwide. Other European Union (EU) national regulators have been equally assiduous in setting aside 4G spectrum for a fourth player. There are signs, however, that regulatory attitudes – both at a national and European level – are softening. (more…)