German MNOs fall short of coverage obligations

16 Apr 2020

Germany’s Federal Network Agency (FNA, known locally as the Bundesnetzagentur or BNetzA) has completed the review of reports submitted by mobile network operators (MNOs) to determine whether they met the coverage requirements of the 2015 multi-band spectrum auction. These included an obligation to provide mobile data speeds of at least 50Mbps to 98% of households nationwide and 97% of households in each federal state by 1 January 2020, as well as fully supplying the main traffic routes.

According to the FNA, all three operators did not fully meet the coverage requirements on time but the watchdog has given Telefonica Deutschland, Vodafone Germany and Telekom Deutschland until the end of this year to fulfil the obligations, or face being fined. The companies were also given interim deadlines in June and September in order to counteract further delays as early as possible.

Specifically, Telefonica did not meet the requirements in all 13 federal states and for the main traffic routes, achieving a coverage rate of 80%, while Telekom narrowly missed the requirements in three federal states (Baden-Wurttemberg, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland) and failed to meet the main traffic routes with coverage levels of 97% for motorways and 96% for railways. Finally, Vodafone missed the coverage target in four states (Baden-Wurttemberg, Hesse, Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland) and achieved coverage rates of 96% for motorways and 95% for railways.