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The European Union has backed proposals for a rollout of the 700MHz spectrum band to boost mobile broadband speeds across the bloc.

Policymakers backed the move as this particular spectrum band requires less infrastructure than higher bands, while it can also cover wider areas, Reuters reports.

This should improve both access to mobile broadband throughout the EU and connection speeds.

The rollout of the 700MHz band could also pave the way for next-generation 5G mobile technology and the move into the mainstream of the so-called Internet of Things.

Gunnar Hokmark, an MEP in the European Parliament, commented: "5G will change the logic of our economies. 

"Successfully launching 5G in the European Union will require the efficient use of spectrum."

Mr Hokmark added that this proposal therefore represents a "first and very important step forward".

This is the latest commitment to improving connectivity from the EU, after it set a target for minimum download speeds of 100Mbps to be universally available by 2025.

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