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Australia’s 5G spectrum auction on its way


6 August 2018

The Australian Communications and Media Authority has released critical information for the upcoming auction of spectrum in the 3.6 GHz band, recognised internationally as the first band for 5G services.

5G technologies represent the next generation of mobile broadband services, enabling enhanced mobile broadband, large-scale industrial automation and low latency, ‘ultra-reliable’ networks to support critical communications.

‘As a key enabler of the digital economy, the 3.6 GHz spectrum will ensure Australia is well-placed to realise the benefits of 5G. Timely release of 5G-compatible spectrum will facilitate the early delivery of next generation 5G services to the Australian public and industry’ said ACMA Chair, Nerida O’Loughlin.

‘The ACMA has designed an auction process—including starting prices—that aims to maximise efficiency, competitive outcomes and the full utility of this spectrum for 5G’ said Ms O’Loughlin.

Key parameters for the auction announced by the ACMA are:

Spectrum to be auctioned

125 MHz of spectrum in the 3.6 GHz band

Lots on offer

350 lots across 14regions of Australia

Application fee

$10,000 (non-refundable)

Starting (reserve) price (metro)

$0.08/MHz/pop (excluding Perth lower lots)

$0.053/MHz/pop Perth lower lots

Starting (reserve) price (regional)


Auction Commencement date

Late November 2018.

Auction format

Enhanced simultaneous multi-round ascending with software developed by Power Auctions

The Minister for Communications, Senator the Hon Mitch Fifield, has previously directed the ACMA on the maximum amount of spectrum a single bidder can acquire at auction (60 MHz in urban markets and 80MHz in regional areas).

To help bidders prepare for the auction, the ACMA has released an Applicant information package that sets out key auction information. Parties wishing to participate in the auction must lodge their application by 31 August 2018.

MR 24/2018

For more information, please contact ACMA Media on 0438 375 776 or

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