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The European Commission (EC) has directed all member states to open up the 2GHz radio spectrum band for 4G mobile services.

In a move which will affect how mobile broadband is delivered in the UK, the 27 European Union nations have been given until June 30th 2014 to effect this change.

Under this harmonised liberalisation of the 2GHz band, mobile operators will be able to transfer data using the 1920-1980MHz and 2110-2170MHz frequencies.

Neelie Kroes, EC Vice-President and European Commissioner for the Digital Agenda, said this extra spectrum for 4G in Europe will help meet the "changing and growing demand" for broadband.

"I want to see member states acting swiftly to change existing licenses. We all win from faster wireless connections in Europe."

At present, EE is offering 4G services in the UK using spectrum in the 1,800MHz frequency band.

Media regulator Ofcom is to auction off spectrum in the 800MHz and 2.6GHz bands later this year, giving rival firms the opportunity to launch their own 4G services.

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