O2 spent £524 million on two blocks of spectrum – one in the 2.3GHz band which will be used to boost 4G services and another in the 3.4GHz band which will be used for 5G.
EE bought a block in the 3.4GHz band for £303 million.
Vodafone also bought a 3.4GHz block for £378 million.
Both EE and Vodafone were unable to bid for 2.3GHz spectrum because they already have the limit allowed.
Three paid £151 million for 3.4GHz spectrum.
Principal stage ends
Five companies took part in the auction. The principal stage, which has just ended, involved 34 ‘lots’ of spectrum being made available across the two bands.
Airspan Spectrum Holdings Limited did not win spectrum in either band.
“This is good news for everyone who uses their mobile phone to access the internet,” said Philip Marnick, Spectrum Group Director at Ofcom.
“As a nation we’re using ever more mobile data on smartphones and mobile devices. Releasing these airwaves will make it quicker and easier to get online on the move. It will also allow companies to prepare for 5G mobile, paving the way for a range of smart, connected devices.”
Ofcom will now move to the ‘assignment’ stage, which is the last bidding stage of the auction. This is a short process, it says, which allows companies who have won spectrum in the principal stage to bid to determine where in the frequency bands their new spectrum will be located.
After the end of the assignment stage, Ofcom will issue the winning bidders with licences to use the relevant spectrum within a few days. It says it expects to publish the final auction results shortly after.