Dutch Telecom Operators Secure New 5G Frequencies in Spectrum Auction

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Dutch operators KPN, Odido, and Ziggo have successfully secured new 5G frequencies in a recent spectrum auction, as revealed by Micky Adriaansens, Minister of Economic Affairs and Climate, in a letter to Parliament.

These operators can start utilizing the new 3.5 GHz frequencies from July 2024. The government raised 174.4 million euros ($187.6 million) through this auction. The acquired 5G licenses will last until December 31, 2040, providing a solid foundation for long-term network development.

One key aspect of the auction was that each participant could obtain up to 40% of the total available frequencies. The Dutch government also imposed a commissioning obligation on each permit.

Minister Adriaansens emphasized the importance of this development, stating, “Companies and consumers have been waiting for this moment for a long time. Meanwhile, the demand for data is growing rapidly and countries around us have already taken steps. In order to handle all those digital business processes, services, and products, the completion of the auction by the National Inspectorate for Digital Infrastructure is a milestone.”

The new 5G capabilities are expected to boost innovations across various sectors. Improved data transmission speed and reliability will benefit healthcare, manufacturing, and logistics. The auction’s outcome also aims to maintain healthy competition in the telecom market until 2040, ensuring fair prices and promoting innovation.

The Dutch government reserved 2×50 megahertz of the total 400 megahertz available in the 3.5 GHz band for local private 5G networks. This portion of the spectrum was not included in this auction. Companies can apply directly for permits to use these frequencies, fostering opportunities for bespoke private networks.

The newly secured 5G spectrum will enable Dutch operators to enhance their services and meet the increasing data demands of modern consumers and businesses. The government’s measures aim to ensure the country’s telecom sector remains competitive, innovative, and capable of addressing future challenges.

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