Rollout conditions for 26GHz, 28GHz 5G licences altered

4 Feb 2019

Hong Kong’s Communications Authority (CA) has adjusted the rollout obligations for upcoming 26GHz and 28GHz band 5G mobile licensing in response to requests from industry players, the regulator announced on its website. Licensees have five years to install a set minimum number of base stations – calculated in proportion to the amount of spectrum they receive – and must install at least 20% of the total in the first three years, rising to 50% in the fourth year. The timescale was loosened after industry comments concerning lead times for network installations including indoor cell sites. The application deadline has been extended slightly, and is now 22 February 2019. The performance bond for guaranteeing compliance with the network and service rollout obligations, at HKD1 million (USD127,000) per MHz of spectrum assigned, remains unchanged.

As announced in December 2018, beginning in April the Hong Kong regulator will offer a total of almost 4,500MHz of frequencies, including 100MHz in the 3.3GHz band, 200MHz at 3.5GHz and 80MHz at 4.9GHz, plus 4,100MHz across the 26GHz and 28GHz bands. Due to higher demand, the 380MHz of spectrum in the lower ranges will be offered via auction, while the ample supply in the higher bands means those frequencies can be allocated directly.