Mobile in C-band: a long battle ahead
Nov 09, 2017 by Spectrum Research Service Blog


Bands3.5 GHz, 3.4 - 3.8 GHz, 3 - 6 GHz (2017 entry)
LocationEurope, US
Tags3.5 GHz, 3.6-3.8 GHz, C-band, Cisco, FCC, Huawei, Intel, Qualcomm, WRC-19, WRC-23

Only the 3.4 – 3.6 GHz and 3.6 – 3.7 GHz frequencies have been harmonised for mobile use at ITU level but there is growing support among  vendors and operators to see 4G and future 5G services in  3.4 – 4.2 GHz.   Regulators in Europe plan to allocate 3.4-3.8 GHz to mobile and the FCC is considering ways of allowing mobile access right up 4.2 GHz.  Meanwhile Japan is looking to use 4.5 GHz for mobile.

But the strong support from the mobile industry and some countries is matched by fierce opposition from the satellite industry, which uses C-band intensively. Mobile in C-band isn’t on the WRC-19 agenda but it could be at WRC-23: expect a long war of attrition.

Research notes

3.5 GHz

9 November 2017 at 00:00
3.5 GHz received a global mobile allocation at WRC-15, but a shift in focus means it is now being seen as both a 4G and potential 5G band. The band has been selected for the two major initiatives designed to drive 5G: the Citizen’s Broadband project in the US and the EU 5G Action Plan. […]

3.6 – 3.8 GHz

10 November 2017 at 00:00
3.6-3.7 achieved a wider IMT identification at WRC-15 but 3.7-3.8 GHz did not enjoy the same success. Europe is pushing ahead with releasing 3.6-3.8 GHz along with 3.4-3.6 GHz, while the US is considering how to encourage the use of fixed and mobile broadband services in 3.7 GHz -4.2 GHz. C-band spectrum will not be […]

Huawei Technologies

3 November 2017 at 17:03
Huawei sees the 24.25-29.5 GHz and 37-43.5 GHz ‘tuning ranges’ as the most promising for early 5G deployments Huawei is a multinational vendor of mobile network technologies and solutions. The company is active in a wide range of 5G trials and industry collaborations. 5G spectrum priorities For massive machine communications the existing low frequency IMT […]

Qualcomm Technologies, Inc.

3 November 2017 at 13:07
Qualcomm is supporting the C-Band and 26 GHz / 28 GHz as new frequencies for early 5G deployments; the vendor is also pushing for more Wi-Fi channels at 5 GHz Qualcomm is a global semiconductor business, whose chipsets are widely used in mobile terminals. The company is also a leading developer of wireless technologies. 5G […]


3 November 2017 at 13:04
Intel supports the 26/28 GHz bands for early 5G deployment. It is also pushing for extension of the licence-exempt 5 GHz ranges. Intel is a multinational semiconductor and wireless technology company, whose processors power a broad range of computing and communications devices. 5G spectrum priorities Intel supports the European Commission’s 5G Action Plan, which includes […]


3 November 2017 at 12:45
Cisco, a leading provider of core networking and Wi-Fi equipment, is pushing for the expansion of licence-exempt frequencies in the 5 GHz band, as well as for licensed 5G spectrum. Cisco is a global provider of next-generation broadband network equipment and solutions, as well as a leading manufacturer of Wi-Fi (IEEE 802.11) consumer and enterprise […]

Auction Tracker updates

Latvia 3.4 GHz and 3.6 GHz 2 November 2017 at 16:20

Ireland 26 GHz Fixed link and Fixed Wireless Access Auction 25 October 2017 at 16:22

Italy 26 GHz 25 October 2017 at 15:44

Malaysia 700 MHz Beauty Contest 18 October 2017 at 17:35

Thailand 900 MHz, 1.8 GHz 17 October 2017 at 16:56

News articles

Brazil opposes 28 GHz for 5G

9 November 2017 at 14:59
Brazilian regulator Anatel has made spectrum available for 5G at 39.5-40 GHz and 2300-2400 MHz and is considering additional bands – but not 28 GHz. Anatel intends to be “an international reference in spectrum management” in the coming years, said Agostinho Linhares de Souza Filho, manager of the spectrum, orbit and broadcasting division. The regulator […]

Leading market players may not be the first to deploy 5G

8 November 2017 at 12:30
Harkirit Singh of Tata told us that third or fourth tier telecoms players would be the first to deploy new networks. Representatives of Orange, Three and SoftBank have also shared their views recently on the challenges of deploying 5G. Harkirit Singh, director of Tata Communications Transformation Services, told PolicyTracker that the biggest investment in new […]

Will Hong Kong’s new chief executive accelerate 5G development?

7 November 2017 at 14:49
Hong Kong’s new chief executive, Carrie Lam, has proposed investing HK$700 million (€77.5 million) on key infrastructure projects for 5G and a smart city initiative in her annual policy plan. Those infrastructure projects include the development of fibre-based networks in remote locations, a new generation of on-street parking meters and a pilot “multi-functional smart lamppost” […]

Satellite industry regrets UK regulator’s 3.6-3.8 GHz decisions

6 November 2017 at 12:03
The Europe, Middle East and Africa Satellite Operators Association (ESOA) has said it is a shame the UK has not followed the example of other European countries in its 3.6-3.8 GHz plans. UK regulator Ofcom plans to make the 116 MHz of available spectrum in the band available as soon as possible and says its […]