1&1 Drillisch is having to delay the deployment of its 5G network due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Handelsblatt cites Ralph Dommermuth, the CEO of parent company United Internet, as saying. Dommermuth explained that permits required for the laying of fibre-optic cables are difficult to obtain as many local building authorities have closed. He added that while 1&1 Drillisch is also seeking access to the networks of existing mobile operators, it has so far failed to reach an agreement on the financial details of an infrastructure sharing deal with Telekom Deutschland, Vodafone Germany or Telefonica Deutschland.
According to TeleGeography’s GlobalComms Database, 1&1 Drillisch applied to take part in Germany’s 5G spectrum auction in January 2019, with a view to becoming the fourth mobile network operator. The firm’s wholly owned subsidiary Drillisch Netz acquired 2×10MHz of 2100MHz frequencies for EUR334.9 million (USD370 million) and 50MHz of 3.6GHz spectrum for EUR735.2 million at the conclusion of the auction in June 2019.