Telefónica boss Markus Haas admits mistakes when setting up the mobile network. “In the past, we only invested when there was customer demand”, Haas told the Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. That has changed. “Today we are closing much earlier”, he added.
The Federal Network Agency threatens the company with a penalty payment of 600,000 euros if it does not make any progress with the required LTE expansion by the end of July. Haas wants to avoid this at all costs: “We are very, very confident that we will shortly be able to report that we have completed the first part of the 7,600 LTE stations required for the whole year, thus avoiding a penalty payment.” The corona lockdown delayed the project somewhat. “But now we’re catching up and are back on schedule”Haas told the newspaper.
From 2019 to 2022, around 4 billion euros will be invested in the O2 network – to consolidate the 4G network and to build a 5G infrastructure.
Telefónica: Federal Network Agency very forgiving
In the allocation of the frequencies auctioned in 2015, the Federal Network Agency stipulated that from the beginning of the current year 98 percent of households nationwide and 97 percent of households in each state must be supplied with a minimum data rate of 50 Mbit / s per antenna sector. The main traffic routes should be fully supplied. All three mobile network operators were given a deadline to remedy the missed coverage requirements after non-compliance, the Federal Network Agency said in April. The authority asked companies to fully meet the requirements by December 31, 2020 at the latest. Partial deadlines were set for milestones in June and September. A further deadline until the end of July 2020 was set for Telefonica’s missing LTE masts, as the regulatory authority announced on July 9, 2020 in Bonn.
According to Haas, the mobile communications group recorded one in the corona crisis “extreme rise” in speech volume, “In the top of 20 to 30 percent. Since the people could not visit each other, they spoke on the phone. Often for hours.” A driver for the Telefónica business are customers with a migration background, for whom the group offers its own brands. “With Ay Yildiz, several million people can make cheap calls to Turkey via our O2 network”said Haas. “There is also Ortel, with whom you can make calls abroad for one cent a minute.”