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5G spectrum public sale concludes; Bell, Rogers and Telus bag probably the most licenses | IT Enterprise Categorical Instances

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Twenty-two Canadian carriers collectively paid over C$2.1 billion for a file 4,099 licenses within the 3800 MHz spectrum public sale. 

Bell, Rogers and Telus received nearly all of the licenses. Telus acquired 1,430 licenses for round C$619 million, Bell received 939 licenses for round C$518 million, and Rogers received 860 for round C$474 million. Collectively, the Huge Three carriers accounted for 76 per cent of the full quantity raised.

Throughout the 3500 MHz public sale in 2021, carriers paid over $8.9 billion for 3,431 licenses, however the authorities solely assigned a small quantity of spectrum (200MHz) which restricted spectrum entry to solely the largest gamers, who, in flip, drove the valuation to file numbers.

This time, nonetheless, the federal government set a 100 MHz spectrum restrict on how a lot mixed 3500 MHz and 3800 MHz spectrum a supplier might purchase, successfully reserving spectrum for smaller rivals and reducing costs.

Montreal-based provider Cogeco, as an illustration, acquired 99 licenses for C$190 million this time round, in comparison with 38 for C$295 million within the final public sale.

The corporate mentioned it now has spectrum overlaying 100 per cent of its Canadian broadband footprint, and is getting ready to launch cell operations through the newly established cell digital community operator (MVNO) regime, offered it obtains passable charges for wholesale entry to the networks of the main gamers.

Eastlink, which additionally registered as an MVNO, netted 187 licenses for about C$10 million.

Moreover, Vidéotron paid about C$300 million to amass 305 licenses within the 3800 MHz band.

The corporate mentioned it plans to strengthen its presence exterior of Quebec, as 61 per cent of the 305 blocks of wi-fi spectrum it acquired are situated primarily in southern Ontario, Alberta and British Columbia.

Québecor additionally purchased spectrum in Manitoba, the place it now holds a complete of 46 blocks within the 600, 3500 and 3800 MHz bands, because it prepares to enter that market.

3800 and 3500 MHz are usually complementary mid-band spectrum frequencies that present pace and capability, Rogers defined in a launch. 600 MHz is low-band 5G spectrum that carries wi-fi information throughout lengthy distances and thru dense city buildings. The mixture creates constant and dependable 5G protection in each city and distant areas.

Innovation, Science and Financial Improvement Canada (ISED) mentioned that licenses within the 3800 MHz band will embody robust deployment obligations that require corporations to “use or lose” the spectrum inside formidable timelines, in order that Canadian customers, together with these in distant areas, can profit from the newest wi-fi applied sciences.

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