Portugal telecom regulator sees first 5G services on offer within weeks

FILE PHOTO: A woman takes pictures during the first demonstration of the technology 5G in Lisbon, Portugal June 4, 2018. Picture taken June 4, 2018. REUTERS/Rafael Marchante

LISBON (Reuters) - Portugal should see 5G services go on sale for customers within weeks after new operators bought spectrum licences in an auction, the head of ANACOM regulator said on Thursday, bolstering much-needed competition in a sector dominated by just three players.

Portugal and Lithuania are the only two European Union countries that have not yet embarked on a commercial rollout of 5G technology, which will allow for everything from self-driving cars to remote surgery.

ANACOM chief Joao Cadete told reporters a day after the regulator concluded a long-running 5G licences auction there were still some administrative procedures to follow, but some players, who have been testing the 5G technology, were practically ready to launch their retail and corporates offers.

"It will be quick... maybe a few weeks. The auction will increase the needed competition in Portugal," he said.

ANACOM said on Wednesday that Telecom Nowo, owned by Spain's Masmovil, and Dixarobil, which belongs to Romanian group Digi, bought licences in the auction, which took 200 days to complete.

They will join NOS, Altice (MEO) and Vodafone, which also bought 5G licences, in Portugal's retail mobile market. They account for almost 100% of the market.

Small telecom operator Dense Air also won a 5G licence, but will only operate in the wholesale mobile market.

Cadete said the auction would benefit consumers by increasing competition in a market where "prices and offers are fully aligned" between the dominating players."

Delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the auction of several spectrum lots was launched by ANACOM in January, despite legal challenges from the main players who say the rules unfairly favoured new entrants.

(Reporting by Sergio Goncalves; Editing by Nathan Allen and Jane Merriman)

Article type: metered
User Type: anonymous web
User Status:
Campaign ID: 46
Cxense type: free
User access status: 3
Join our Telegram channel to get our Evening Alerts and breaking news highlights


Next In Tech News

Cryptocurrency exchange Coinstore enters India despite pending curbs on trade
Amazon to open Abu Dhabi fulfilment centre by 2024, says govt media office
DeFi: Over US$10.5bil of cryptoassets stolen this year
Barcelona has installed speed cameras for cyclists
PlantLife, the TikTok for plant-lovers
First ‘robotaxis’ enter service in Beijing
Xiaomi to open car plant in Beijing with annual output of 300,000 vehicles - Beijing govt
India tells public to shun Musk-backed Starlink until it gets licence
Not for the faint hearted: 'Happy Game' is anything but
El Salvador ‘Bought the Dip,’ Acquiring 100 More Bitcoin

Others Also Read