The federal government will hold two auctions to allocate 5G spectrum next year following the first mid band 5G spectrum auction that was held in late 2018. Telstra has bought the most spectrum so far, with TPG and Vodafone somewhat less and Optus the least.
The first auction in April 2021 will allocate high band 5G spectrum (in the 26GHz band), which will enable extremely fast, high-capacity services. A few months ago the government placed a cap of 1Ghz on the amount of spectrum any single mobile carrier could lease at that auction. In theory that means if one player out of Telstra, Optus and TPG (incl Vodafone) is willing to splash out serious cash they could grab just over 40% of the available high band highest speed short range spectrum.
In the second half of 2021, the Government will allocate low band 5G spectrum (in the 850/900 MHz band), which will be crucial for broader geographic coverage of 5G services.
Minister for Communications, Cyber Safety and the Arts, the Hon Paul Fletcher MP, said the low and high band 5G spectrum will complement the mid band 5G spectrum that the Government has already auctioned.
“Low band spectrum can carry the 5G mobile signal longer distances, and is best for wide coverage indoors and outside. The mid band spectrum provides broad coverage and fast speeds and the high band spectrum will allow blazing fast speeds over shorter distances.”
“We are making the low, mid and high bands available so that the telcos can provide better, faster and stronger 5G in Australia”.
5G, the next generation of wireless mobile broadband, will deliver speeds significantly faster than 4G and at much lower latency — now just to see what costs are passed onto us consumers..