5G

Greece launches €367.3m tender for 5G frequencies

25 September 2020 | Melanie Mingas

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The Hellenic Telecommunications and Post Commission (EETT) has launched Greece’s tender to award frequencies to operate the country’s 5G networks.

Published Thursday, EETT said the auction concerns the 700-megahertz, the 2GHz, the 3,400-3,800 MHz and the 26 GHz bands. The starting price for the entire set of frequencies is set at €367.3 million with applications to be submitted on October 23 from 10:00am.

The auction is expected to be completed by December 21.

Assessing the future value of Greece’s 5G economy, Accenture said the technology has the potential to increase GDP by US$6.7 billion and create 46,000 jobs between 2022 and 2028. As many as 52% of consumers surveyed by Accenture agreed on the importance of Greece being among the 5G adoption leaders in South East Europe.

The analysis read: “Our study confirms a high degree of convergence at telco’s expectations and plans regarding 5G deployment and strategy. All telco players agree that eMBB will be among the first commercially available 5G services. An additional interesting finding is that all of them are also seriously considering a collaboration model in the deployment of network infrastructure.”

Since EETT announced the tender, local papers have quoted Vodafone Greece CEO Haris Broumidis, as saying the operator will launch 5G services in the first quarter of 2021. Vodafone plans to cover 60% of the country with the initial rollout planned for Athens and Thessaloniki.

Meanwhile, COSMOTE, the mobile arm of OTE, in March selected Ericsson as exclusive 5G Radio Access Network (RAN) vendor under a major network modernisation deal.

Michael Tsamaz, OTE group chairman and CEO, said: “5G is the future of telecommunications and a necessary precondition for the Gigabit Society. It is the underlying technology which will be used by all the innovative applications that will change our lives in the near future.

“OTE Group creates the state-of-the-art infrastructure that our country and society need in the new digital era. We invest heavily to enable our customers to enjoy the innovative services and products brought by 5G. With technology and innovation, we create a better world for all,” Tsamaz added.

On monetising the network, Accenture said operators expect their customers will pay a premium of no more than 10%, while CSPs said new revenue opportunities will be presented “not only by creating and delivering new services, but also by partnering with new business models on applications.” For example, 75% are expecting guaranteed SLAs to be the main business model targeting 5G monetisation for B2B.

“Regarding the willingness of their leading target industries to pay, only half of the telcos predict that those industries will finally pay more for 5G services,” the report continued.