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Sweden Says UHF Is for Mobile

Government decision on mobile broadband could affect broadcasters

The Swedish government has decided that the UHF frequency band 694–790 MHz should be used solely for mobile communications as of 2017.

TV broadcasters thus have three years to migrate from this space to 470–694 MHz or to the VHF Band III (174–240 MHz), which means sharing the latter with DAB radio.

As a consequence, and since TV (DVB-T) consumes more bandwidth than radio, DAB radio in Sweden could end up with limited space. In 2007, Finland assigned the VHF Band III exclusively to TV and has since dismissed DAB/DAB+ for radio distribution.

Today, only 25% of Swedish households receive TV via a digital terrestrial network. The majority of viewing is via cable and satellite, while online viewing is also increasing.

A political decision on the future of DAB radio in Sweden is expected in 2015.

— Christer Hederström