24GHz mmWave 5G spectrum available without auction; MegaFon/Rostelecom receive test mmWave band

20 Mar 2020

Russia’s State Commission for Radio Frequencies (SCRF) has allocated a 400MHz block of mmWave 5G spectrum in the 24.25GHz-24.65GHz band for an indefinite number of users which may include industrial enterprises alongside telecoms operators. As reported by ComNews, the decision, made at a meeting of the State Committee for Emergencies on 17 March 2020, was in response to 5G development interest from large companies gauged via a survey from the Ministry of Digital Development, Communications & Mass Media, whilst the ministry also received expressions of interest from regional governors regarding deployment of 5G pilot zones in Tomsk, Novosibirsk, Chelyabinsk, Krasnoyarsk and Primorsky. The meeting also confirmed that a previous proposal for an auction of frequencies in the 25.25GHz-25.9GHz band is now officially cancelled. The proposed auction format had involved two regional lots in each region of the Russian Federation (with a total of 170 lots), but the process had been criticised as inefficient.

The meeting participants also decided to award a block of test 5G mmWave spectrum in the 24.65GHz-27.5GHz band to New Digital Solutions, a joint venture of MegaFon and Rostelecom, for studying 5G capabilities using domestically-manufactured equipment/systems in partnership with state corporation Roscosmos.