Austria raised a total of 202 million euros ($240 million) in a new 5G spectrum auction, the Austrian Regulatory Authority for Broadcasting and Telecommunications (RTR) said in a statement.
In this second 5G spectrum auction, local operators obtained frequencies in the 700 MHz, 1.5 GHz and 2.1 GHz bands.
T-Mobile Austria spent nearly 87 million euros for 90 megahertz, A1 secured 80 megahertz for more than €65 million and Hutchison Drei Austria obtained 90 megahertz for almost 50 million euros, the regulator said.
Under the terms of the spectrum auction process, mobile operators had committed to provide mobile broadband in 802 communities which were poorly supplied or not covered at all, in exchange for price discounts for their bids.
Following the auction, 80% of 2,100 so-called “not-spots” that lack any coverage and poorly covered areas in Austria are set to be supplied with “high-performance mobile broadband coverage” by 2027, managing director of telecommunications at RTR Klaus Steinmaurer said.
The regulator also noted that the expansion of networks is very cost-intensive. “In order to take these conditions into account, we have designed the framework conditions for network expansion to be as investment-friendly as possible. The sharing framework is also much more liberal than in the past. Active and passive sharing and, under certain conditions, the shared use of spectrum are permitted. And for the provision of mobile coverage in motorways, expressways, federal and state highways as well as railway lines, we promote cooperation models between operators of these traffic routes on the one hand and mobile phone operators on the other,” Steinmaurer said.
The auction had been delayed due to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Telekom Austria’s subsidiary A1 had commercially launched its 5G services in January this year. At the time of the launch, the carrier said its 5G network will cover 350 locations across 129 municipalities in Austria.
The company claimed its “A1 5Giganetwork” will be the largest 5G network in Austria, spanning 54,000 square kilometer. A1 had acquired 5G spectrum in the 3.5 GHz band in March 2019.
T-Mobile Austria, owned by German carrier Deutsche Telekom, spent 57 million euros at the first Austrian spectrum auction and launched 5G services in March 2019. At the time of this launch, T-Mobile Austria had said that it planned to use the experience it gains in these first 5G sites before expanding 5G nationwide.
Rival operator Drei ended last year with approximately 100 5G base stations across the country. Some of the cities in which the telco provides 5G are Linz, Pörtschach, Wörgl, Leoben, as well as in parts of Graz and Vienna.
Drei said that the expansion of the company’s current commercial 5G network will be mainly driven by market demand in the country, the company’s CEO Jan Trionow previously told RCR Wireless News.
The post Austria raises $240 million in its second 5G spectrum auction appeared first on RCR Wireless News.