Chilean regulator Sub-Secretaria de Telecomunicaciones (Subtel) has awarded 4G frequencies to Claro Chile, Entel PCS and Movistar Chile. The trio have twelve months to roll out their networks with a maximum of 24 months to start offering services in 543 specific locations, chosen for their geographic isolation and lack of internet connectivity. Local subsidiary of Mexican giant America Movil, Claro Chile, was awarded ‘Block A’ of the 2.6GHz spectrum, whilst local telco Entel was awarded ‘Block B’ and Movistar – backed by Telefonica of Spain – was awarded ‘Block C’.
Bids were placed in UFs, a Chilean accounting unit the value of which is determined by the nation’s Central bank. Claro took the top block with a bid of USD2.9 million (UF62,196), although Entel entered a higher bid of USD8.84 million (UF189,349) while Movistar bid USD503,134 (UF10,777). The trio were the only bidders for the spectrum.
Minister of Transport and Telecommunications Pedro Pablo Errazuriz said that the operators had been assessed not just by their bid value but their ability to ‘ensure coverage, competition and quality of service’ as well as ‘signal quality inside homes and buildings, standards for infrastructure sharing and use of these third party networks by offering facilities for virtual operators.’