A consortium comprising Analysys Mason, DotEcon and the law firm Hogan & Hartson LLP, has been awarded a contract to produce a study by the European Commission entitled “Exploiting the digital dividend – a European approach”.
Across Europe, countries are either planning or in the process of switching over from analogue television signals to digital, and some have already completed this switchover. Digital switchover will free up a significant amount of spectrum (primarily in the UHF band), the so-called ‘digital dividend’. This provides an unprecedented opportunity in view of
- the superior propagation characteristics of the UHF band and the amount of spectrum that is potentially available;
- the wide range of potential uses of the spectrum and the potential role this spectrum could play in creating economic growth; and
- new employment across Europe.
The study is aimed at identifying and evaluating options for a co-ordinated EU approach, and will provide:
- an inventory of the situation regarding the digital dividend in each Member State;
- analysis to understand the demand for the spectrum as well as the social and economic value of potential users;
- a review of technical issues (e.g. technology trends, interference issues); and
- a range of scenarios for a co-ordinated EU approach, and a cost/benefit analysis of each approach.
The output of the study will include a final recommendation for a co-ordinated approach along with a proposed roadmap for implementation.