The network operator Telefonica (O2) and Vodafone suits against the rules for the frequency allocation in the upcoming mobile communication standard 5G. “The Federal network Agency agreed award conditions, in our view, legal uncertainty and barriers to Investment,” said Telefonica Germany spokesman Guido Heitmann in Munich. Therefore, we have submitted to the administrative court in Cologne just before Christmas, action.

Vodafone Germany goes this way. “We have expressed our concerns against various conditions at an early stage and, after a thorough examination of the adopted conditions to the application determined”, it was the people of Düsseldorf.

Details not want to speak to a Vodafone spokesman, referring to the ongoing procedure. Also, Deutsche Telekom had announced plans to consider legal action. No information on the current state were at the weekend, first to get.

Telefonica spokesman Heitmann stressed that the legal step Telefonica wants to produce legal clarity. This relates to the core requirements for the supply in the area, and to cooperate with other providers in the so-called Roaming. Heitmann complained that network operators should invest heavily in an area of supply, with the method provided range of frequencies not meet. “Also, there are ambiguities with a view to Roaming and the guidelines for cooperation with service providers.”

100 Times faster than LTE – but also more expensive

The frequencies for mobile communications standard, 5G will in the spring be auctioned. 5G stands for fifth generation mobile technology. The network will bring much faster mobile Internet. This is especially important for the industry, for example in Autonomous Driving. The transfer rate is about 100 Times as high as in the case of 4G (LTE). The network operator must take for the frequencies a lot of money in the Hand. Your fear: too high requirements, you will earn too little of it.

In November, had set the Federal network Agency’s procurement rules for the auction, via an Amendment to the telecommunications act, the rates could be amended in the direction of the expansion, but still. By the end of 2022, 98 percent of all households in Germany fast mobile Internet by the end of 2024 Federal and state, are to be supplied to Railways in two steps, all the car roads, as well as important Railways and waterways.

reading tip Finally understand: As 5G Germany’s future

months-long dispute will shape it had been given a nationwide offer. The fear of many critics: The rural areas could continue to have large white spots. Federal politicians had brought the so-called local, Roaming into the game. Here, mobile phone users would be connected in a funk hole for free with another provider. Such a scheme does not exist yet in Germany. On Roaming, the network operators should negotiate, according to the Federal network Agency, the authority does not want to commit.

A setback for the digital site in USA

Only recently had warned the network Agency, in a Letter to the Federal ministries for transport and the economy before that, the local Roaming soon in the telecommunications act. Such a Change even before the 5G auction in the spring of 2019 would cause “significant legal uncertainties and the auction compromise procedure,” complained the authors.

For Telefonica, it was on the weekend, the suit aims to have planning security for the high level of investment. To not want to a possible application for a temporary injunction that could stop the auction if appropriate, speak to the network operator. It is set out that the filing brings the movement into the case.

According to the Deputy FDP parliamentary group Chairman Frank Sitta, the danger is that the digital location of Germany falls even further back. “The complaint of Telefonica to the 5G-licensing is the logical result of the months-long orientation-free politicisation of the proceedings by the Grand coalition.” She wanted to force the coverage at the mobile radio frequencies which are not suitable for this, technically. Instead of legal security there is “a Wish-You-What-receivables”.


Sam Yoon has many years of experiences in journalism. He has covered such areas as information technology, science, sports and politics. Yoon can be reached at 82-2-6956-6698.