Germany LTE: Goes to 100

Duetshe Telekom (DT) unveiled its commercial LTE network in Cologne, Germany, in June, reports Fierce Wireless. The construction of fourth-generation mobile networks begins this year in over 100 German cities.

This deployment comes 12 months after DT was successful in bidding for LTE spectrum in the 2.6 GHz, 1.8 GHz and “Digital Divide” band. DT’s Cologne LTE network will use 1.8GHz frequencies.

Deutsche Telekom is now selling “up to” 40 Mbps LTE wireless broadband service with a 50 gigabyte monthly cap, reports Fast News. The service costs 89.95 Euros (US$125), about three times the cost of landline-based DSL.

Vodafone Germany is also trying to get existing DSL subscribers to sign up for LTE by offering discounted rates depending on how much time remains on their fixed-line contract.

Both Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone Germany recently added 2.6 GHz spectrum from the German auctions. As they move to LTE Advanced (2013-2015), they may be able to offer similar speeds and prices of DSL.

Deutsche Telekom purchased 20 MHz (two times 10 MHz) in the 790 to 862 MHz frequency range, the so-called “digital dividend.” DT’s Cologne LTE launch in Cologne provides web’n’walk connectivity up to 100 Mbit/s for downloads for three months. In addition, the base rate in the amount of EUR 74.95 will be dropped for the first three months.

With the availability of LTE in other major cities, the introduction of another high-speed rate will occur in the fall of 2011. This will enable use of LTE with full bandwidth of up to 100 Mbit/s for downloading. With an inclusive volume of 50 gigabytes, the rate will cost EUR 89.95 per month. This rate will also be exempt from the basic charge for the first three months of the launch phase.

Deutsche Telekom will use the acquired spectrum in the other, higher frequency ranges (1.8 GHz and 2.6 GHz) to enlarge capacities and speed for growing data traffic in metropolitan areas.

DT and Vodafone were both required to first to offer service in “unserved” areas, using their Digital Dividend spectrum, from 470-854 MHz. Deutsche Telekom selected Nokia Siemens Networks as one of its suppliers to set up and maintain the LTE radio network across Germany. The Digital Dividend spectrum, around 800 MHz, is best suited to cover rural areas with mobile broadband Internet, says NSN.

Unstrung reports the long-running German spectrum auction finished in May, 2010, after a total of 224 bidding rounds and 27 “auction days” since April 12.

According to regulator Bundesnetzagentur, the total sum raised from the sale of the 41 frequency blocks was almost €4.4 billion ($5.4 billion). The blocks were sold in four frequency bands: 800MHz (paired); 1.8GHz (paired); 2.0GHz (paired and unpaired); and 2.6GHz (paired and unpaired).

  • 800 MHz (digital dividend), paired 60 MHz
  • 1800 MHz, paired 50MHz
  • 2100 MHz (3G), paired 39.6MHz
  • 2100 MHz (3G), unpaired 19.2MHz
  • 2600 MHz (BWA), paired 140MHz
  • 2600 MHz (BWA), unpaired 50MHz

The winning bids were:

  • Vodafone D2: €1,422,503,000 ($1,758,907,135), for 12 blocks in total
  • Telefónica O2: €1,378,605,000 ($1,703,564,840), 11 blocks
  • Telekom Deutschland (T-Mobile) : €1,299,893,000 ($1,605,122,503), 10 blocks
  • E-Plus Service: €283,645,000 ($350,113,159), 8 blocks

Vodafone connected 1,000 small towns. The net cost was remarkably little and far less than the estimates in other countries for near 100% coverage, say news reports. Germany is rapidly approaching 100% LTE coverage. LTE-Advanced may soon offer faster speeds with more spectrum in the 2.6 GHz band.

Vodafone Germany has been testing a hybrid set-top box that enables users to receive cable and digital satellite channels alongside Vodafone TV’s IPTV service. The set-top is capable of automatically selecting the technology that provides the best reception. The TV service, which includes a 16 Mbps broadband service and 50 TV and 12 HD channels, costs €39.95 per month.

Related LTE-Advanced articles on Dailywireless include; Clearwire Chooses LTE Advanced , Europe’s Digital Divide Auction, German 4G Auction: It’s Done, Germany Gets LTE, Germany 4G Auctions Begin, Europe to Follow, WiMAX to TD-LTE: Everybody’s Doin’ It, Speculation on Sprint Infrastructure, LG Telecom: CDMA & LTE Handover, Australia: WiMAX to TD-LTE,

The European Commission has ruled that member states must allow 4G devices to access both 900 and 1,800 MHz radio frequencies by the end of the year.

Mobile wireless capability is central to the EU’s Digital Agenda and it believes that an increase in Internet uptake will boost competitiveness of the EU’s common market. Neelie Kroes, Commissioner for the EU’s Digital Agenda, said in a statement (pdf) that the “the decision opens the way for the latest 4G mobile devices to gain access to the radio spectrum they need to operate.

Related Dailywireless articles include; Europe’s Digital Divide Auction, Clearwire Chooses LTE Advanced, Spectrum Drama: Made for TV, LTE Spectrum: It’s War, German 4G Auction: It’s Done, Auctions Winding Down in Germany & India, Germany 4G Auctions Begin, Europe to Follow, EU: Global LTE Roaming at 1.8 GHz, T-Mobile Makes Its (4G) Move, End Near for Indian WiMAX?, WiMAX & LTE: Policy Vs Pragmatism, Intel: LTE Not Nail in Coffin, India’s Broadband Auction: It’s Done, India’s Broadband Auction: No Free Lunch, TD-LTE Gains Momentum, WiMAX Forum: Not Dead Yet, Yota Dumps WiMAX, UK Getting LTE, WiMAX to TD-LTE: Everybody’s Doin’ It, Speculation on Sprint Infrastructure, LG Telecom: CDMA & LTE Handover, Australia: WiMAX to TD-LTE, LTE-Advanced Progress, Ericsson Demos 1 Gbps Advanced LTE, Sprint’s LTE Advantage, LTE-Advanced Tested in Korea

Posted by Sam Churchill on .

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