Outcome of 850/900 MHz band spectrum auction

Two companies, Optus and Telstra, have won spectrum in the Australian Communications and Media Authority’s (ACMA) latest spectrum auction.

All 16 lots available were allocated. The allocation realised a total revenue of $2,091,618,000, equivalent to almost $1.21/MHz/pop.

Optus won 8 lots of spectrum at auction for $1,119,183,000, and acquired a total of 12 lots of spectrum for $1,475,958,000. Two set-aside lots were allocated to Optus for a pre‑determined price, and two lots of 1 MHz were automatically allocated also to Optus as the winner of the 900 MHz lower products.

Telstra won 4 lots of spectrum for $615,660,000.

ACMA acting Chair Creina Chapman said the spectrum has been designed to support the deployment of 4G and 5G networks across Australia.

“This spectrum will support the deployment of more wireless broadband services, facilitating higher speeds and more reliable networks for consumers,” Ms Chapman said.

“The successful allocation of 850/900 MHz band spectrum is another important step forward for Australia’s transition to 5G, and the deployment of new technologies.”

Licences won at auction will come into force on 1 July 2024, for a 20-year term ending in 2044. Winning bidders may have the opportunity to obtain early access to the spectrum under special circumstances before licences commence.

This auction follows the 26 GHz band mmWave spectrum auction held in April 2021.

The full results have been published on the ACMA website.

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