Dense Air sides with Anacom over 5G

 In 5G, News, Telecoms

Altice, Nos and Vodafone might be against the Portuguese regulator Anacom’s decision to reform the auction system to speed up the introduction of 5G in Portugal, but at least one company agrees with it.

Dense Air is in favour of ending placing extremely low bids to speed up the end of the auction process which has been so slow and contentious it has resulted in Portugal lagging behind its other EU partners in rolling out the new high-speed internet technology.
Dense Air which promises to densify urban connectivity, extend rural internet reach and enhance mobile networks says it supports Anacom in its mission to open up and democratise the Portuguese market to allow in smaller players.
It is the only company that now has licences to operate 5G technology and calls on Portugal’s big three to allow commercial networks to roll out “as quickly as possible”.
On the day in which the deadline for interested parties to send Anacom “suggestions” and “contributions” to be considered was up, in this second review of the rules and regulations governing the sale of frequencies, an official source in the wholesale operator told the online news source ECO that it agreed with Anacom’s plans to change the rules and end low percentage bids.
“Dense Air entirely supports the proposal from Anacom to change the rules that will put an end to low bid increments of 1% and 3% from bidders to speed up the auction and ensure the launch of 5G in Portugal as quickly as possible,” said the Dense Air source.
The large operators have criticised Anacom’s decision to not withdraw the 5G operation licences from Dense Air until the controversy is resolved and which the wholesaler inherited from a company last year but never used.
Dense Air now intends to offer 5G network services to other operators. Portugal is now at risk of becoming the last country in the European Union apart from Lithuania which doesn’t yet have the technology commercially available.
The operators say they think Anacom is being unreasonable by changing the rules yet again half way through the auction.
The bidding process has now been ongoing for more than 100 days, a European record, and there is no clear end in sight. The auction, which is set to make 5G spectrum available to Portuguese operators for the first time, will allocate blocks in the 700 MHz, 900 MHz, 2.1 GHz, 2.6 GHz, and 3.6 GHz bands. By day 99 of the bidding, bids had reached €318.8 million, topping the reserve price of €195.5 million.