FNA assigns 800MHz, 2.6GHz frequency blocks

3 Sep 2010

Germany’s telecoms regulator, the Federal Network Agency (FNA), has announced it has allocated frequency blocks in the 800MHz and 2.6GHz bands which were auctioned last May. Following the proceedings, Telefonica O2 Germany received the first two blocks in the 800MHz band, while the two middle blocks were allotted to Vodafone Germany, with both upper blocks in the 800MHz band going to Deutsche Telekom. The blocks were awarded through a lottery process by the FNA, after the operators failed to reach an agreement between them on the position of the frequency usage rights within three months. ‘Now that all frequency blocks purchased have been allotted, fast broadband provision, including to rural areas, is now in the hands of the companies, commented Matthias Kurth, president at the FNA, adding: ‘Network operators can now finalise their network plans and build and expand their networks swiftly.’ The 800MHz frequencies include a rollout obligation to cover areas underserved with broadband services, also known as ‘white spots’.

According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, a spectrum package of 360MHz in four different bands went under the hammer last May, of which 60MHz in the so-called ‘digital dividend’ range of 800MHz – divided into six blocks of 2×5MHz – proved the main attraction, with the majority of funds (EUR3.576 billion) generated by this range. The country’s three largest mobile operators by subscribers each secured two paired 5MHz blocks in the 800MHz band, while E-Plus, which is the local unit of the Netherland’s KPN, failed to win any spectrum in the 800MHz range. The frequency blocks auctioned for a specific spectral position, including those in the 1.8GHz and 2GHz bands, were assigned to the successful bidders directly after the auction. Meanwhile, the allocation of the frequency blocks in the 2.6GHz band can be found in an overview published on the FNA’s website.