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eBay urges industry regulator to enhance UK m-commerce experience

31 May 2011 - 19:45 by David Aiken

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Online auction giant eBay has told regulator Ofcom that it needs to make sure UK consumers can access the next generation of m-commerce tools sooner rather than later, by speeding up the rollout of 4G networking technology across the country.

Spokesperson, Angus McCarey, told the Telegraph, that when Ofcom auctions off the 4G spectrum in 2012, it needs to ensure that there is adequate competition in the superfast mobile broadband market so that consumers can reap the benefits.

4G and LTE (Long Term Evolution) technologies are currently being heavily invested in by various telecoms firms but Ofcom still needs to preside over the allocation of the radio spectrum, which will enable different companies to offer comparable, competitive connectivity.

With 4G, the speed of mobile browsing will increase dramatically, which will, in turn, make the possibilities for safe shopping online via a mobile much more interesting. M-commerce is becoming hugely popular but consumers regularly cite the fact that many apps and mobile sites do not match up to the same high standards of the desktop PC shopping experience.

It is thought that in the next few years people will be spending close to one and a half billion pounds via safe shopping online accessed from their mobile phones. 4G will greatly help with this boom but eBay is concerned the smaller network operators, such as 3 UK, will be pushed aside because of the enhanced bidding powers of Vodafone and O2.

It is significant to see one of the world's best known auction houses getting involved in what is being heralded as the largest auction of its kind ever held, because it is clear the organisation not only has expert advice to give but also a vested interest in making sure consumers can enjoy m-commerce as cheaply and expansively as possible.