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Korea Plots 5G Spectrum Boost

South Korea’s Ministry of Science and ICT (MSIT) detailed plans to nearly double the allocation of 5G spectrum for mobile operators by end-2026, making an additional 2,640MHz of airwaves available.

The ministry, which in April introduced its so-called 5G+ Spectrum Plan, aims for Korea to lead the world in spectrum availability, with a target of 5,320MHz.

MSIT did not designate the specific bands or a timeframe for releasing the new spectrum, but industry sources expect each operator to be allocated another 300MHz in the 3.5GHz band.

South Korea was one of the first to auction 5G spectrum, raising KRW3.61 trillion ($3.06 billion) in a sale of 3.5GHz and 28GHz airways in June 2018. SK Telecom, KT and LG Uplus acquired 280MHz of 3.5GHz spectrum and 2,400MHz in the 28GHz band.

The operators, which launched the service in early April, ended September with a combined total of nearly 3.5 million 5G subscribers.―Mobile World Live

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