The three network operators have now submitted their reports on compliance with the supply requirements of the 2015 auction. The Federal Network Agency will now verify this information. According to the Federal Network Agency, it is already clear from the reports of the network operators that the requirements have not been met.
According to their own statements, the companies Telekom and Vodafone have basically fulfilled the requirement of supplying to households. Telefónica was unable to meet the supply requirements demanded by the Federal Network Agency in time, according to the Bonn authority. “However, the company assumes that it will meet the requirements by the end of this year,” the regulator said.
However, all three providers have problems with the main traffic routes, namely ICE routes and highways. “According to the mobile network operator, the main traffic routes could not be fully supplied by the end of the year,” he says.
These are the reasons for the slow expansion
Mobile network operators justify delays with outside influences. This is, for example, the unwillingness to rent in potential locations, the lack of building permits, the protection of monuments, nature and the environment. There are also different legal views on the content of the pension obligation, which are the subject of ongoing legal proceedings. At O2 there are also “company specific characteristics” that have also caused delays in network expansion. However, supply needs are expected to be met through another 7,600 locations this year.
Frequencies in the range of around 700 MHz, which had to be removed from transmission, have only been fully available since mid-2019. Since then, companies have notably increased the pace of expansion, sums up the Federal Network Agency. Connect had also noticed significant improvements in its network test, also with O2.
The regulator threatens sanctions
The Federal Network Agency is currently verifying the information provided by the mobile network operators and will make its own measurements in each federal state. The test and measurement service of the Federal Network Agency determines whether the coverage reported by the mobile network operators is actually available. These reviews will take several weeks to complete.
As part of an overall assessment, the Federal Network Agency decides whether the coverage requirement is met and verifies what action should be taken. “We do everything possible to ensure that the companies identified by us quickly remedy deficits in meeting our requirements. Our goal is for the expansion of mobile broadband to continue as quickly as possible. Official sanctions are not excluded. They will be used by the Federal Network Agency if they meet the objective of improving delivery, ”says Jochen Homann, President of the Federal Network Agency.
So the network operators should have expanded
In the allocation of frequencies auctioned in 2015, the Federal Network Agency stipulated that mobile network operators must supply 98 percent of homes nationwide and 97 percent of homes per federal state with a speed of 50 Mbit / s minimum data per antenna sector as of January 1, 2020. In addition, the main traffic routes must be fully provisioned.