UK regulator Ofcom is consulting on plans to make spectrum in the upper 6 GHz band available for mobile internet and Wi-Fi services. The consultation closes on 15 September 2023. 

The upper 6 GHz spectrum band is being looked at to support rising demand for data. This interest is divided between using the band for the exclusive launch of licensed mobile use or low-power licence exempt use such as Wi-Fi. Instead of choosing between these two options, Ofcom is considering an alternative approach called ‘hybrid sharing’, which would enable the use of both mobile and Wi-Fi in the band. 

The regulator is looking to identify appropriate mechanisms for hybrid sharing, such as an indoor/outdoor split (enabling indoor Wi-Fi use and licensed mobile use outdoors) or geographical sharing (enabling licensed mobile use in specific high-traffic locations, with Wi-Fi use allowed elsewhere). Ofcom is also looking to promote international harmonisation of hybrid sharing in the upper 6 GHz band. 

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