(9 July/Farmers Weekly)

Wireless Internet Service Providers Association (WISPA) is worried that when the Government sells off radio spectrum rights next year the major cell phone companies will purchase them and just sit on them. WISPA president, Mike Smith reported its 30 members need the spectrum to service rural communities and if bigger cellphone companies were to purchase the spectrum, they would focus on urban customers who are cheaper and easier to service. The spectrum being sold is going to be ideal for wireless, which covers a wider area than the current spectrum. The government made a statement saying that by auctioning off the spectrum that it will align with its Rural Broadband Initiative which aims to deliver more than 84,000 rural households and businesses with a faster wireless internet connection. A 5G network will be is expected to be rolled out nationwide in 2022, but the holder of the spectrum will have the right to roll it out quicker.