Re: Why were EE (ILLEGALLY) allowed to get a head start on 4G?
Firstly EE also got the same allowance to do 3G on their 1800MHz spectrum, so that blows away your argument about it being market distorting.
Secondly when TMUK and OUK applied to become EE, the European Commission agreed with one proviso: That they sell 15MHz of 1800 Spectrum - to 3 as it now turns out - <<specifically to avoid consumers being ripped off by a monopoly>>. THAT is why the other operators cried foul.
""..... the OFT was concerned about the concentration of spectrum on the 1800MHz band that the parties will jointly hold after the creation of the JV. This could affect the future offering of services over the new, fourth generation (4G)........ the JV might result in just one mobile network operator offering this type of services in the UK, thereby resulting in a significant impediment to effective competition in mobile broadband and higher prices for consumers.
In order to remove the possible concern as regards the spectrum holding of the JV following the proposed transaction in the UK market, France Télécom and Deutsche Telekom committed to divest, either by way of a private sale or in the OFCOM auction (see paragraph 115 above), 2x15 MHz of the JV’s 1800 MHz spectrum band (the "Divestment Spectrum"). ""