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5G

Arcep creates a 5G rollout observatory


Following the completion of the main auction and positioning auction stages of the procedure for awarding 3.4 – 3.8 GHz band spectrum, Arcep will be awarding operators their frequency licences in the near future. To keep track of their progress, Arcep is creating an observatory dedicated to 5G rollouts.

 

An observatory to accompany the launch of 5G, and keep elected officials and citizens informed about its arrival in their area

To keep track of 5G deployments in Metropolitan France, Arcep will be publishing a dedicated observatory that will provide the following information:

  • The number of 5G cell sites that each operator has activated, and the frequency bands they use (3.5 GHz bands, low-range bands, mid-range bands);
  • A regional mapping of active 5G cell site deployments, by operator;
  • The number of 5G cell sites activated in “territories of industry” and in priority rollout areas;
  • The percentage of 4G cell sites in operators’ network that are providing increased throughput and equipped with a theoretical capacity to supply speeds of 240 Mbit/s (4G+)[1];
  • A regional mapping of 4G+ cell sites.

This observatory, which is in keeping with Arcep’s data-driven approach to regulation, will enable elected officials and citizens to stay informed about the arrival of 5G in their area.

The first 5G observatory will be posted online as the first 5G plans become commercially available.

All of this information will be made available as open data.

 

In early 2021, the observatory will be completed with unprecedented data on each operators’ planned rollouts

The licences to use 3.5 GHz band spectrum that will be awarded in November carry unprecedented transparency obligations regarding mobile operators’ deployments (not only on 5G rollouts in the 3.5 GHz band, but also more broadly on every band and technology).

As a result, in early 2021, Arcep will publish details on:

  • the location of the cell sites that operators plan on activating in the next three months, including information on the available technology;
  •  the location of the cell sites for which an urban planning permit application has been filed.

 

 

Annex- Operators’ main rollout obligations, tied to the award of 3.5 GHz band licences

Every operator that was a winning bidder for 3.5 GHz band spectrum must comply with a set of rollout obligations, in support of regional digital development.

In particular, these obligations include:

  • A specific rollout trajectory for 5G cell sites using the 3.5 GHz band

Operators must deploy 3,000 cell sites in 2022, 8,000 in 2024 and 10,500 in 2025, using 3.4 – 3.8 GHz band frequencies.

  • Specific obligations regarding non-urban areas

25% of the cell sites deployed in the 3.4 – 3.8 GHz band for the final two milestones (2024 and 2025) must be deployed in an area that includes municipalities that are part of low-density areas and so-called territories of industry, outside the country’s main metropolitan areas.

  • A steady increase in connection speeds, moving towards the ultimate goal of a nationwide 5G service.

By 2022, at least 75% of cell sites must be equipped to each deliver speeds equal to a minimum 240 Mbit/s: operators can provide this level of performance either in 5G or 4G+. This obligation will gradually be extended to include all cell sites by 2030, at which point every one must be supplying a 5G service.

 

Associated documents:

 


[1]Starting in 2022, at least 75% of cell sites must be equipped to each deliver speeds equal to a minimum 240 Mbit/s: operators can provide this level of performance either in 5G or 4G+. This obligation will gradually be extended to include all cell sites by 2030, at which point every one must be supplying a 5G service.