4G spectrum auctions will take place this year


The government in Thailand has moved to end what has been months of uncertainty for telecoms operators by confirming the proposed auctions for 4G will take place later this year.

Following a meeting held on Wednesday of the National Digital Economy Committee, chaired by PM Prayuth, the 4G spectrum auctions are now likely to take place in August after the committee ruled the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications could auction all frequencies ranging from 900MHz to 1800MHz, as well as 2.6GHz in order to help cope with increased demand for data.

This approval should hopefully mean that 4G is now a step closer for users in Thailand.

The delay in the 4G spectrum auctions has not only reportedly lead to uncertainty amongst operators but also confusion amongst users, given that telecoms operators continue to widely advertise 4G services all over Thailand, this is despite the fact that auctions to decide 4G licenses are still to take place.

The 4G services offered currently by the likes of True, Dtac and AIS are done so through concessions from the two state telecoms operators, TOT and CAT Telecom.

The 4G spectrum auctions, which are now said to take place in August, will enable Thailand’s privately owned telecoms operators to bid for 4G services in order for them to start launching their own 4G packages to customers.

As well as discussing the 4G auctions, the National Digital Economy Committee also approved ambitious plans to provide every house in Thailand with access to broadband Internet within the next three years.

Related: Govt announces plans for affordable broadband throughout Thailand

The project to create a national broadband network will be a joint venture between the government and the private sector. The joint venture will take approximately six or seven months to set up, while developing the broadband network would be completed within in 10 months, prior to the installation of the network across Thailand.

Also on the agenda of Wednesday’s meeting of the National Digital Economy Committee was the approval of plans originally announced earlier this year which will  see a number of government ministries going ‘paperless’.

Additional reporting from Thaivisa News team.