News24

Countries agree on new mobile spectrum

2012-02-18 08:00

Geneva - The International Telecommunication Union (ITU) said Friday its World Radiocommunications Conference (WRC-12) has agreed a treaty aimed at revising the radio frequency spectrum to speed up mobile services.

The increased spectrum will allow easier and cheaper global broadband expansion and will replace the current third generation or 3G technology for more than one billion mobile telephone users.

Speaking at a briefing shortly before the end of the four-week conference, ITU General Secretary Hamadoun Toure said, "WRC-12 has helped to define new and better ways to regulate radio services and applications."

"It represents a major contribution in making the world a better place for all," he said as the conference attended by 165 of the ITU member countries was ending.

WRC-12 chairperson Tariq al-Awadhi described the negotiations as "sometimes difficult", but added, "we have arrived at consensus that will shape the way we communicate in the future."

After the members of the ITU, which represents 193 countries, were to sign the treaty later on Friday, officials said the new broadband spectrum is expected to come on stream in 2015 after WRC-15.

Francois Rancy, director of the ITU's radiocommunication bureau said the treaty "is good for consumers and it is good for operators", because increased spectrum costs are cheaper.