5G: Since March 19, 2019, the auction has been running on the 5th generation of mobile standard frequencies. But the criticism of allocation and frequencies remains.
The Administrative Court of Cologne rejected the urgent applications of Telekom, Telefonica and Vodafone and thus cleared the way for the auction of the 5G frequencies. Now it will show who is really interested in frequencies in the ranges 2.4 GHz and 3.4 GHz to 3.7 GHz.
With their urgent applications the telecom giants originally wanted to soften the public procurement guidelines. They consider the supply requirements to be unreasonable. The owners of the new frequencies must supply 98 percent of all households per federal state, all federal highways, the main federal highways and relevant railways with fast data connections by 2022. In addition, the plaintiffs complained about the included negotiating offers. They oblige the owners to negotiate with competitors who want to share the frequencies.
Cologne Administrative Court dismisses 5G lawsuits
The Administrative Court did not follow the suit and considered the award criteria lawful. Thus, in the opinion of the court, the Federal Network Agency (BNetzA) has a discretion in the regulation of the conditions for the award of frequencies. Also a recourse to existing frequencies is legitimate. The negotiating bids, in turn, secured the government’s goals of the Telecommunications Act and also the inadmissible privilege of new entrants was not given, since they faced the challenge of establishing a mobile network first. Also the complaint of Mobilcom-debitel/freenet was rejected by the court. In contrast to the other plaintiffs, they even wanted to accept a service provider commitment.
Uncertainties remain about 5G
However, the complaints show that there are many inconsistencies in this year’s auction. Bitkom President Achim Berg reiterated this: “The companies are being forced into a corset that calls into question the profitability of the planned investments. It remains unclear whether the procurement rules are lawful at all. In addition, regulatory measures were announced that could significantly change the competitive environment after the closing of the auction. Thus, the entire process is on shaky ground.”
In view of the possible autonomous driving with the support of the fifth generation of mobile phones, the frequencies now being auctioned are not intended. The technique would only be possible in a different frequency range. The digitization of transport processes, on the other hand, can certainly profit from the gap closure and faster connections.
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