The saga of the UK’s 2.6Ghz spectrum auction continues, Rethink Wireless reported. The sale was originally supposed to take place in late 2007. It didn’t. Last autumn regulator Ofcom said it would be held by April, then mid-2009. Now Ofcom has withdrawn that proposal too, as the 2.6 GHz sale is to be part of the auction of the so-called digital dividend — frequencies in the 800MHz range freed up by the move from analogue to digital TV — next year.

The UK’s 2.6GHz auction has been held up by a fierce legal row between the operators and Ofcom for trying to sell the spectrum before it had made a decision about how it would reallocate the 900MHz spectrum for 3G use. The operators objected as the decision will have a big effect on how much the operators need 2.6GHz and consequently its market value. Now the Digital Britain report has made things more complicated, insisting that at least part of the 2.6GHz sale must be held alongside the award of the 800MHz band.