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Germany ‘to reserve 100MHz of 5G spectrum for industrial users’

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Germany is to allocate 100MHz of spectrum in its forthcoming auction to large industries so they can build their own networks and bypass licensed mobile operators.

The spectrum, in the 3.4-3.8GHz band, is expected to be taken up by companies such as BMW, Bosch and Siemens, the former German regulator told a conference in Munich yesterday.

Matthias Kurth, now executive chairman of Cable Europe, a cable industry lobbying group, was until February 2012 the president of Bundesnetzagentur, the German telecoms regulator.

“The spectrum will be reserved for German industry, so industry can build its own networks,” Kurth told a Huawei conference in Munich on Monday. Spectrum will be allocated “by a beauty contest not an auction”, he said.

The industry spectrum will be allocated at the time of Germany’s 5G spectrum auction, due to be held in spring 2019, he told Huawei’s Operations Transformation Forum, which continues until Tuesday. 

“Germany wants to be an early adopter.” He did not say whether any particular uses would be specified for the industrial spectrum. “These kinds of conditions are always controversial. We have different business models in the market.”

But he added: “The regulator should leave the business model to the market. You can’t always see what sort of technology can be developed in the future.”

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