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Three, TalkTalk and CityFibre join forces for ‘MakeTheAirFair’ campaign

Alex Yau
November 28, 2016

Each company is campaigning for Ofcom to cap the amount of available spectrum each operator can hold at 30 per cent

Three, TalkTalk, CityFibre, Gamma and Relish have all joined forces to call on Ofcom to restrict the amount of spectrum operators can hold at 30 per cent.

The new campaign, called ‘MakeTheAirFair’ has been designed to ensure consumers ‘benefit from more choice, improved performance, faster speeds and lower prices.’

It follows criticism from Three CEO Dave Dyson ahead of next year’s auction, who claimed Ofcom was putting Three and O2 at disadvantage by not restricting spectrum. EE currently holds 45 per cent, followed by Vodafone (29 per cent), O2 (15 per cent) and Three (12 per cent).

Ofcom CEO Sharon White has recently asked for views from the public on how the next mobile spectrum auction should be structured. Supporters of ‘MakeTheAirFair’ can voice their opinions through the campaign’s official website.

The campaign claims a 30 per cent cap will offer more competitive pricing, faster mobile speeds and more choice through the MVNO sector. Only Thailand and Malaysia have a larger imbalance of the airwaves amongst mobile operators, according to the campaign.

Dyson said: “The UK mobile market is broken at a critical time when it should be leading and not lagging almost all other developed countries. Ofcom must prove it is on the side of consumers and apply a 30 per cent cap on total spectrum ownership following next year’s auction.

“Spectrum is a national asset that should benefit every citizen.  If it’s all controlled by one or two massive businesses then you can’t have effective competition and everyone loses out. This is the moment for the British public to stand up and fight for real choice and better mobile services.”

CityFibre director of strategy and public affairs Mark Collins added: “We are at a critical point in determining the future of the UK mobile market. With growing investment in the next generation of mobile network infrastructure, the time is right to protect the viability of that competitive market.

“As a challenger in our market, CityFibre is wholly aligned to the change this campaign seeks to achieve. The regulator must ensure that the upcoming auction is designed to improve services for all.”

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