Roome has been a member of at800’s management team since the company’s launch in March this year, and is being promoted from his current role of director of marketing and communications. Prior to joining at800, he was global head of press relations at the Finnish–German joint venture Nokia Siemens Networks.
Beresford-Wylie has stepped down as CEO to join Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. as global executive advisor to its Network business.
Roome will lead at800 as it continues with its objective to ensure UK viewers can still watch Freeview, or are offered a suitable alternative, as 4G at 800 MHz signals go live across the country.
Andrew Pinder, at800 chairman, said, “Since joining the company, Ben has played a key role in strategic decisions about at800’s approach and organisational structure in addition to running its marketing and communications activities. His excellent technical knowledge, belief in putting viewers’ needs first and experience in the mobile telecoms industry make him the right person to lead the organisation.”
Roome said, “I want to ensure we provide the best possible service to UK viewers so they can continue to watch Freeview TV with minimal disruption from 4G at 800 MHz. We’ve achieved a lot in a short space of time and will continue to evaluate the extent of the problem and refine our approach as networks offering 4G at 800 MHz expand across the country.”
Following pilots in Brighton, south east and west London and the West Midlands; and analysis of data gathered since the launch of 4G at 800 MHz that began in August, at800 is confident that disruption to Freeview will not be as widespread as initially predicted.
The organisation will continue to raise awareness so viewers know what to look out for and how to get in contact if they need to. It has sent postcards to those more likely to be impacted and is running targeted advertising, PR and digital campaigns and advising local councillors as 4G at 800 MHz arrives in regions across the UK. Anyone who thinks they might be affected should call at800 on 0333 31 31 800 (included in call packages) or 0808 13 13 800 (free from a landline).
Download a PDF copy of this release – at800 CEO appointment release
About Ben Roome
Ben Roome is chief executive officer (CEO) of at800, also known as Digital Mobile Spectrum Ltd. (DMSL). He was formerly director of marketing and communications for the organisation, which he joined in March 2013. From April 2008 prior to joining at800, Ben was global head of press relations at the Finnish–German joint venture Nokia Siemens Networks. Ben was chief spokesperson for the €13 billion business, leading its team of communications heads based in regional headquarters around the world. From 2000, Ben worked at the Canadian telecoms company Nortel Networks in a range of communications roles, ultimately working as the director of communications for Europe, Middle East and Africa.
at800 is the consumer brand of Digital Mobile Spectrum Ltd. (DMSL), the organisation responsible for ensuring people continue to receive free-to-air television when 4G mobile services operating at 800 MHz are launched. The organisation is funded by the UK mobile operators with 800 MHz spectrum allocations to provide 4G services – EE, Telefónica UK (O2), Three and Vodafone.
4G enables mobile devices such as smartphones, laptops and tablet PCs to access the internet at super-fast speeds and is expected to bring innovations in business, entertainment, education and public services. 4G mobile services at 800 MHz and digital TV operate in adjacent parts of the radio spectrum. Equipment that receives television signals, such as aerials, amplifiers and digital tuners, can fail to block 4G at 800 MHz. This can cause loss of sound, blocky images or loss of some or all Freeview channels. Freeview is the television that viewers receive through their aerial. BT Vision, YouView, TalkTalk and Top Up TV also provide Freeview services. Only new 4G services at 800 MHz could cause problems with Freeview; existing 4G services from EE operate at 1800 MHz and do not disrupt television reception. Satellite and cable TV services are unlikely to be affected by 4G at 800 MHz.
at800 will contact those households it predicts may be affected by this issue before 4G at 800 MHz is switched on in their area. It will also contact businesses, social housing departments, care homes, hospitals, schools and colleges to advise what action needs to be taken.
Tel: +44 (0) 7539 231 897