O2 switches on 5G network:Not later than 2025, 5G will be supplied all over Germany

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On the 30th anniversary of the German unification, Telefónica Germany / O2 enters the 5G era. In cooperation with the Bavarian Prime Minister Markus Söder, the CEO of the Munich-based company Telefónica Deutschland / O2 switches on the 5G network of O2. "We are starting off the data turbo for digitization from Bavaria, for Germany", said Markus Haas at the switch-on ceremony. Thereby, O2 is sending a signal towards mobile freedom, progress and digitization in Germany, on a day that represents connecting people from West and East like no other. O2 will launch the 5G network in October in Germany’s five largest cities: Munich, Berlin, Hamburg, Cologne and Frankfurt. Additionally, the network will immediately be activated in ten more cities - including, for example, Düsseldorf, Stuttgart, Essen and Potsdam.

Markus Haas
"With our 5G network, we are expanding rapidly. On German Unity Day, we start off with 5+10 cities and will also quickly conquer rural areas," explained Markus Haas. By the end of 2021, the O2 5G network will have grown from 450 to over 6,000 antennas. In order to tap into rural areas, the company will also use Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS) technology in the near future. Frequencies that are currently used for 3G will gradually be reallocated to the 5G network. Telefónica Deutschland / O2 will thus provide more than 30 percent of the German population with 5G by the end of next year and by the end of 2022 already about half of the German population. The commercial marketing of 5G will begin on 6 October. O2 will be able to offer the best price-performance ratio on the market. "We democratize high-tech and make 5G mass market ready. We have consciously chosen the anniversary of German unification for the launch of 5G. This day particularly represents progress, freedom and the connection of people in our country. We are now setting our O2 5G network live - in significantly more cities than originally planned. And we are rapidly expanding the network. In only two years, we will be supplying around half of Germany with 5G and then, by 2025 at the latest, the entire country will be supplied with 5G", says Markus Haas, CEO Telefónica Germany / O2.

Launch in 15 major German cities

Mallik Rao
Next to Berlin, Hamburg, Munich, Cologne and Frankfurt, 5G will go live in October in cities such as Stuttgart, Düsseldorf, Essen and Potsdam. Telefónica Germany / O2 will start with 150 5G locations and a total amount of 450 antennas. By the end of 2021, the company will set up more than 2,000 5G sites in cities and thus around 6,000 5G antennas on the high-performance 3.6 GHz frequencies. These are going to enable speeds up to 100 times faster than 4G. Furthermore, the new mobile communications standard has significantly lower delay times and also enables the connection of up to one million devices per square kilometer. "With new technologies such as Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS), we are bringing 5G turbo to rural areas”, explains Mallik Rao, Chief Technology & Information Officer of Telefónica Germany / O2. "DSS serves us as a bridging technology, which is particularly well suited for expanding 5G coverage with 4G frequencies quickly. We are already preparing for a standalone 5G network for superior experience.”

Quantum leap for network technology

5G antenna in Hamburg
Benefitting more than 43 million customers, the company will continue to expand the fifth generation of mobile communication in large steps. The launch of 5G is a milestone in the four-billion-euro network offensive with which O2 will drive digitization across Germany forward over the next few years. Due to the technological leap through 5G, the impact for economy and society will be significantly greater than with previous mobile communication standards: with 2G, customers were able to make phone calls for the first time. With 3G, they were able to send e-mails or surf on the Internet on the go. Since 4G, high-resolution videos can be streamed. With 5G, applications such as augmented or virtual reality will now be able to develop their full potential. "The added value 5G offers to society as a whole through its all-encompassing connection of traffic, cities, professional world and everyday life will go far beyond the individual use by customers," says CEO Markus Haas. "The industrial sector will also benefit massively from 5G, as production and logistics will be more efficient, cheaper and more sustainable. This ensures their profitability and competitiveness." As a partner, O2 can provide tailor-made 5G network solutions and consequentially make Industry 4.0, with digital factories, intelligent energy networks and connected driving, a reality. Today, the company has already set up a high-performance 5G campus network for Mercedes-Benz Cars in Sindelfingen, which is to be used in the ongoing automobile production. Furthermore, 5G will have a major impact on climate protection. Compared to 4G, the new mobile phones generation is much more energy efficient and consumes up to 90 percent less electricity per byte. This also reduces CO2 emissions.

5G by O2 offers excellent price-performance-ratio

As 5G is part of all O2 Free mobile phone tariffs from 39.99 euros per month, many O2 customers will be able to surf the O2 5G network immediately as of 6 October and experience 5G quality without additional charges. An attractive offer will be available for business customers from 12 October onwards. Consequentially, O2 will open up completely new dimensions of digitalization for private and business customers. Right after the market launch, O2 customers will have a good choice of smartphones for the new generation of mobile phones. Currently, ten devices are 5G-capable at O2 - that is more than 15 percent of all end devices offered by O2. In addition, further attractive 5G-capable devices are expected to launch on the market in the near future. This will increase 5G usage strongly. Telefónica Deutschland / O2 assumes that the number of 5G-enabled, activated devices in the German mobile networks will increase to up to five million in the next two years. In a network map on the O2 customer portal, O2 customers will be able to see where they can use the network. This will go live online in the coming weeks.