The Estonian watchdog announced conditions for its much-maligned 5G auction has been set, which paves the way for the anticipated sale to begin this year.
This was according to Minister of enterprise and information technology Andres Sutt, who said in a statement: "Finally, we can announce the 5G competition after a very long and difficult debate in public, in court, in government and elsewhere.
“But now we can focus on the future and bring consumers the ultrafast internet already this year, which has been eagerly awaited.”
Only three frequency licenses will be put up for sale despite prior legal challenges for a fourth. Starting price begins at € 1.59 million with interested parties to submit their interest before April 4.
The auction will begin in late April after submissions have been considered and licenses issued to winners no later than June this year.
Estonia’s 5G auction was in legal limbo in 2020 and stalled due to affixed and IoT provider Levikom issuing a court challenge against the Consumer Protection and Technical Regulatory Authority (TTJA), stating having three incumbent operators would stifle competition and benefit bigger players such as Elisa, Tele2 and Telia.
The regulator compromised and opened the fourth spot on the 3,410-3,800 MHz airwaves, but this drew criticism from the Estonian Association of Information Technology and Telecommunications which stated the spectrum will be too spread out to provide a true 5G connection.