Ofcom has announced its proposals for how it will release and licence the spectrum that will be freed up as a result of the switchover to digital television.

The spectrum, known as the digital dividend, in the UHF band, is currently used for the delivery of TV channels using analogue technology and can carry lots of info over large distances.

With the "aim to enable innovative services that will deliver significant benefits to UK citizens and consumers", Ofcom says the bandwidth would be suitable for ultra-fast mobile broadband and mobile television as well as more digital television services, in standard or high definition.

Ofcom plans to make 128MHz of cleared spectrum available on a UK-wide basis, holding an auction in 2009. The spectrum will be freed up for new uses in phases, as digital switchover proceeds between now and 2012.