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Five Australian Telcos Win 5G Radio Spectrum Rights

5G services in Australia are about to get a whole lot better, as five Australian telecommunications companies won the rights for radio spectrum in the 26 GHz band, vital for providing 5G services in Australia.

Telstra, Optus, Mobile JV, Pentanet, and Dense Air Australia paid $647,642,100 for 358 lots, bidding in a ten-day auction held by the Australian Communications and Media Authority.

Telstra came away the big winners, securing 150 lots across all capital cities and regional areas.

“High speed connectivity is critical to Australia’s future prosperity and our aspirations to be a world leading digital economy,” Telstra CEO Andrew Penn said. “It has become central to all of our lives – the way we live, work, keep ourselves entertained and stay connected, and more and more 5G will be at the heart of that.

“mmWave spectrum is especially good at providing high-speed mobile broadband in high-density areas, such as built up cities and towns, train stations, sport stadiums and other locations with a high concentration of people using their mobile devices.”

Optus won 116 lots, across Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Perth, Adelaide, Canberra, Hobart, Margaret River, and a number of regional spots.

“We understand how important our role is in connecting people,” Optus Networks managing director Lambo Kanagaratnam said. “What is truly exciting about this spectrum is the ability to really deliver on the future potential of 5G and ultra-fast speeds.

“In short, we are armed with the ability to build and expand our 5G network and deliver on the future of 5G in the home, office or on-the-go.”

Mobile JV, owned by TPG Telecom, won 86 lots, Pentanet won four lots in Perth, and Dense Air Australia won two lots.

“This outcome represents another significant milestone for 5G in Australia,” ACMA chair Nerida O’Loughlin said.

“The successful allocation of this spectrum will support high-speed communications services in metropolitan cities and major regional centres throughout Australia.

“This auction is one among a suite of licensing approaches that the ACMA has introduced in the 26 GHz and 28 GHz bands to encourage a wide range of innovative communications uses.”

The licences take effect mid-year, and last for 15 years.

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