Spectrum and Numbering


What is spectrum?

Radio spectrum is an invisible but essential resource typically used to wirelessly connect people and things to the services and facilities they need or rely on. Uses range from television, radio and mobile phones to key fobs, baby monitors and home Wi-Fi.

Different services are allocated to different parts of the available radio spectrum, and use radio waves at different frequencies to transmit data and information between a transmitter and receiver. Mobile telephone networks, for example, use designated blocks of spectrum to allow communication between mobile handsets and mobile base stations.

Internationally recognised guidelines exist to protect against any potentially harmful effects from using radio spectrum, with regular testing used to ensure companies providing services meet expectations.

Why does spectrum need managing?

Spectrum is an essential but limited resource. Demand for radio waves has grown, and will continue to grow, as reliance on wireless services increases. New technologies do allow more efficient use of spectrum – each generation of mobile services has allowed faster and faster mobile data speeds, for example. But there needs to be careful spectrum management to ensure there is enough available for all services and to make sure that one service does not cause radio interference for another.

In many countries, responsibility for managing spectrum is given to national regulators, which usually issue licences permitting organisations and individuals to use the available radio waves.These include specific licences issued to different organisations, shared access licences allowing more than one organisation to use the same spectrum, local access licences for limited geographic purposes and trial licences for testing new services. There is also licence-exempt spectrum for applications unlikely to interfere with any other spectrum users.

How is Jersey spectrum managed?

Special arrangements exist for managing Jersey’s spectrum. Under a legal agreement made with the UK government, UK communications regulator Ofcom manages local spectrum on behalf of the Island. Ofcom uses its extensive expertise and experience to ensure this is carried out efficiently and effectively, and its legal powers to issue local spectrum licences or extend UK spectrum licences to the Island.

Alongside issuing local telecoms licences, the our role is to assess interest in and demand for local spectrum used for telecommunications services, which may include holding competitive evaluation processes or consultations to determine allocation plans. Once complete, we make a recommendation to Ofcom to issue new spectrum licences or to manage those already granted.

This means that telecoms companies providing wireless communications services in Jersey require two licences:

  • A telecoms licence issued by us under the Telecommunications (Jersey) Law 2002; and
  • A spectrum licence issued by Ofcom under the UK Wireless Telegraphy Act 2006.

There may be fees, terms and conditions applying to both licences, which may be different for individual companies or vary for different services.

Where to find more information

Ofcom provides extensive information on its spectrum management plans and activities here.

Spectrum licences issued by Ofcom to local telecoms companies are here.

Applications to Ofcom for a spectrum trial licence are here.

To enquire about a possible spectrum requirement or question contact info@jcra.je


As a matter of custom and practice, Jersey is a member of the UK National Telephone Numbering Plan (NTNP), whereby geographic numbers and mobile numbers are distinguished by their prefix code. For example, fixed numbers in Jersey are 01534.

For the purposes of number allocation, the respective roles of JCRA and Ofcom in coordinating the allocation of telephone numbers in Jersey are as follows:

  • Ofcom is responsible for the allocation of numbers for Jersey. Operators will therefore apply directly to Ofcom for range allocation. Allocation will be dependent on a local telecoms licence in place
  • Ofcom will inform JCRA on receipt of such applications and of the outcome of its consideration of such applications
  • JCRA includes conditions in the licences of local operators concerning the management of Numbering.
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