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Telia flashes cash in Finnish spectrum auction


Telia Finland was the biggest spender in Finland's spectrum auction as each of the country's operators came away with a 130MHz chunk of frequency.

The operator paid €30.3 million for spectrum in the 3.41-3.54GHz band. Elisa paid €26.3 million for its share in the 3.54GHz to 3.67GHz band and DNA €21 million for the 3.67-3.8GHz frequency.

Telia said its purchase would underpin its plans to launch 5G from early next year, delivering throughput of more than 20 times and capacity up to 100 times that of LTE.

It said in a statement: "The revolutionary aspect is the ability to connect a huge number of devices connected to the network and the possibility to enable services that require ultra-low latency and extreme reliability."

Telia launched its first pre-commercial 5G network at HJK Helsinki football stadium last month.

It is aiming to deploy pre-commercial 5G in sites surrounding the stadium in the coming months.

In a statement, Elisa said 5G would allow it to deliver services in the Internet of Things, augmented and virtual reality, traffic, healthcare and entertainment. 

Elisa launched what it claimed was the world's first commercial 5G network in June, albeit one without any compatible handsets. It has been rolling out a 5G ready network during the past year.

DNA, whose customers have been found to be the most data hungry, said 5G would lead to it offering higher quality and more versatile data services. In August, it said customers are using 21GB of data per month.

The operator's CEO Jukka Leinonen said: “5G is an important step forward regarding mobile services, and we already have been developing DNA’s mobile network for 5G readiness. The use of mobile data has greatly increased in recent years, which increases the need for a 5G network."

He added: “5G will enable fast and stable connections in many properties that cannot get an optical fibre connection.”

In July, DNA showcased 5G's potential within the smart home and has also been working on upgrading its network during the past year.