Deutsche Telekom (DT) and Telefonica Germany announced a significant expansion of a partnership with a deal which will help speed up the deployment of 5G networks and reduce cost.
The agreement, building on a mobile backhaul contract signed in 2011, aims to connect nearly 5,000 Telefonica base stations in Germany with DT’s fibre-optic network. This provides an “ideal foundation” for the upgrade of existing 3G and LTE antennas to 5G.
DT can “dedicate the captured synergy effects directly to its own network expansion”.
The companies said in a statement the cooperation points the way forward for the future 5G communications standard and new digital applications, with increased demands for coverage, speeds and reduced latency: “To meet these increasing demands, the telecommunications providers are teaming up,” the pair said.
Dirk Wossner, MD of DT (pictured, right), noted the agreement is important for the future viability of Germany’s mobile communications infrastructure.
“The resources that we save will be dedicated directly to our own network upgrades and the development of 5G,” he said. “The cooperation also shows that telecommunications providers seek to cooperate without regulatory intervention.”
Operators in Germany have been critical of plans to mandate they provide network access to rivals where they do not have coverage, with regulator Bundesnetzagentur acting as mediator in case of dispute.
DT said it is building and operating the largest fibre-optic network in Germany.
Markus Haas, CEO of Telefonica Germany (pictured, left), also sees the agreement as an important milestone for network expansion in Germany: “By using the available infrastructure, we can accelerate the expansion of our mobile network and get a significant portion of our mobile base stations in shape for the future 5G standard.”Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back