Stage X picked as S. Korea’s fourth mobile carrier

2024.02.01 13:04:01 | 2024.02.02 11:24:26

A bidding agent for Stage X is leaving the site on Jan. 30, 2024. [Photo by Yonhap]이미지 확대

A bidding agent for Stage X is leaving the site on Jan. 30, 2024. [Photo by Yonhap]

A local consortium was selected as the new operator of the 28 gigahertz (GHz) band of the fifth-generation network in South Korea on Wednesday, becoming the country’s fourth mobile carrier.

Stage X, a consortium led by Stage Five, emerged victorious in the auction held at the IT Venture Tower in Seoul, surpassing rival My Mobile, the Ministry of Science, Technology, and Information said.

This marks the fourth player entrant into the nation’s 5G landscape after 14 years, with a winning bid of 430.1 billion won ($322 million), significantly exceeding the minimum bid of 742 billion won. Notably, this bid surpasses the 2018 record of around 200 billion won for the same spectrum by the existing three major carriers ? SK telecom, KT, and LG Uplus. The three operators lost the license for the 28 GHz spectrum last year due to insufficient investment.

Over the next three years, Stage X is obligated to build 6,000 base stations nationwide and implement measures addressing frequency congestion and interference. Given the absence of mobile devices to support the new 28GHz spectrum in the domestic market, Stage X will need to wait for the ecosystem to develop while exploring alternative business avenues.

By Pulse

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