In April 2000 the UK Government auctioned off 3G spectrum to 5 mobile networks raising an incredible £22.47bn. The original estimated income from the auction was just (well it’s relative!) £5bn. Expensive air however you look at it!
The methodology for the auction and reason it was chosen is explained in this paper (pdf).
In simplistic form – there were 5 licences available. Licence A had to go to a new entrant to the market. Licence B and the smaller licences C, D and E could go to either one of the four incumbents (Vodafone; One-2-One, now T-Mobile; Orange; Cellnet, now O2) or a new player. Bidding was held in rounds and bidders could bid for any applicable license in £100,000 increments up to a certain percentage increase each round. The auction would be over when a round occurred in which no new bids were received. In the end 150 rounds took place over a period of a month and a half.
The Radiocommunications Agency created a special website for the auction detailing its progression. This website is still available in archive form on the Ofcom website complete with 2000-era design and instructions for saving data from the site using either Netscape or Internet Explorer.
This was one of the biggest auctions of all time, a recent auction of 3G mobile spectrum in the far larger market of India only raised $15bn. Using frames and with wavy animated text the website, created using Microsoft FrontPage 3.0, doesn’t quite seem to fit the multi-billion pound nature of of the event! Still that’s progress for you – bids were submitted by Fax.
Watching the Olympic Torch relay pass through a series of beautiful little Cornish villages over the weekend and remembering that the 70-day London 2012 torch will not be visiting Watford, I wondered which other large towns or cities are missing out on seeing the torch pass by?
The results are below. Watford is the largest settlement in the UK which the torch will not be visiting, though it will pass through Hemel Hempstead, St Albans and Harrow within a 7 mile radius of the town.
The route was designed to have the torch pass within an hour of 95% of the UK’s population and includes visits to the Channel Islands, Isle of Wight, Isle of Man, Orkney, Shetland and Dublin. Other locations in the top 100 settlements that won’t see the torch are Sutton Coldfield, Woking, Weston-super-Mare and High Wycombe.
There was a tie between two candidates in the Carpenders Park ward of Three Rivers District council.
Conservative candidate Terry Dos Ramos and Lib Dem incumbent Geoff Dunne both picked up 674 votes, well ahead of the third placed Labour candidate. Turnout in the ward – 38.12%.
As a result, one ballot paper marked for each of the tied candidates was placed into a ballot box, and Three Rivers District returning officer Steven Halls picked out the winner, Conservative Dos Ramos.
So, polling day tomorrow and I have the choice between two parties who send us literature, and the three I haven’t heard a squeak from since at least the last election.
Actually, I lie, I’ve already used my postal vote. And I didn’t vote for a party that hadn’t been in touch. If you want me to vote for you it might be a good idea to tell me you are standing and what your policies are before I see your name for the first and only time on the ballot paper.
It seems to have been rather a quiet year for election leaflets this time round, though I suspect this may be because in the Watford Borough at least there is only a single role up for election, that of your ward’s Borough councillor.
On one side there are the Lib Dems who seem to be leading on a Save Watford Met/introduce controlled parking zones everywhere ticket alongside their usual promises. On the other, the Conservatives seem to be leading with with an opposition to development in the area – particularly that proposed for Cassiobury Park – and of course Save Watford Met.
One step on from Tesco promoting their own car insurance offering on the side of Orange Juice. What is it with breakfast time advertising?
There’s even a company specialising in helping brands find their way on to your table in the morning, the rather aptly titled Milkmedia. It’s quite clever really since there will be repeated exposure to the advert every morning and whenever you make a cup of tea.