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Vodafone acquires 5G spectrum

Vodafone UK has acquired the largest amount of 3.4 GHz spectrum - 50 MHz - to be used for mobile data services, in Ofcom’s current auction. The total cost of the purchase is £378.2 million.

A spokesperson for the company said: “Vodafone UK will use the 3400 MHz spectrum to deploy 5G services, enabling Gigabit speeds and lower latency. This will enhance applications including connected vehicles and robotics, industrial automated systems, and virtual and augmented reality.”

According to Vodafone, the spectrum has a 20-year term and is convertible to perpetual licences thereafter. The purchase will have no impact on the spectrum owned by the company prior to the auction.

The selling process began towards the end of March, with Ofcom making spectrum available in the 2.3 GHz and 3.4 GHz bands. The latter is specifically earmarked for 5G.

Other results of the principal auction stage include EE winning 40 MHz of 3.4 GHz spectrum, and Hutchison 3G UK obtaining 20 MHz in the same band. Telefonica UK meanwhile won all 40 MHz of the available 2.3 GHz spectrum and 40 MHz of the 3.4. Airspan Spectrum Holdings was awarded nothing in either band.

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