O2 builds the first LTE networks in Munich and Halle

-Pilot operation of the next generation mobile networks from the end 2010
-Use of 2.6 GHz technology in Munich and Halle as well as 800 MHz in rural suburbs Ebersberg and Teutschenthal
-Existing base stations to be upgraded to the new technology
MUNICH. This year Telefónica O2 Germany is launching two urban LTE networks in Munich and Halle - the first German telecommunications company to do so. The two pilot projects of next generation mobile networks, the so-called Long Term Evolution (LTE), for mobile high-speed internet will be operated on 2.6 GHz frequencies. Furthermore, in the suburbs of Ebersberg, east of Munich, and Teutschenthal, to the west of Halle, the company will be using frequencies from the so-called digital dividend (800 megahertz) for two further LTE networks. Existing base stations will be upgraded to the network standard; there are no plans for new sites. Technical construction of the networks begins in September.
"With the first urban LTE networks in Munich and Halle we are taking a first big step in the construction of the mobile networks of the future in Germany", says René Schuster, CEO of Telefónica O2 Germany. "Our aim is to offer this technology to our customers all over Germany as soon as possible. To do this, we are working closely with network construction companies and device manufacturers and leveraging the global know-how of Telefónica. We are also supporting the federal government's broadband initiative. With the help of the new technology we will be doing our part to close the white spots in broadband coverage for rural areas." LTE enables mobile data transfer speeds that are similar to today's fixed network internet, and these speeds will be the foundation for new services such as video telephony, music and video streaming, gaming and other services in the future. Technical partners for the projects in Munich and Halle are the companies Huawei and Nokia Siemens Networks. Both networks will initially not be put into commercial operation, but will be operated as pilot networks. LTE products for end customers are planned for a later date. In Munich the LTE network will be operated in the same area as and parallel to the existing HSPA+ network belonging to O2. Telefónica is one of the world's leading companies in the development of the LTE standard. The company is operating six LTE field tests worldwide, with various network construction companies in Spain, the Czech Republic, the UK, Brazil and Argentina. In Germany, Telefónica O2 Germany acquired new frequencies for a nationwide LTE network back in May at a cost of 1.4 billion Euros. These included two blocks in the 800 MHz range (digital dividend) and four blocks at 2.6 GHz.
Telefónica O2 Germany GmbH & Co. OHG belongs to Telefónica Europe and is part of the Spanish telecommunication group Telefónica S.A. The Company offers its German private and business customers postpaid and prepaid mobile telecom products as well as innovative mobile data services based on the GPRS and UMTS technologies. In addition, the integrated communications provider also offers DSL fixed network telephony and high-speed internet. Telefónica Europe has about 55 million mobile and fixed network customers in Great Britain, Ireland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Germany.