ANACOM enhances Portugal's mobile broadband coverage

ANACOM - Autoridade Nacional de Comunicações has begun the process of expanding mobile broadband coverage in Portugal, by providing a list of the 480 parishes that Optimus, TMN and Vodafone will be required to cover with high-speed mobile internet.

Mobile broadband coverage of these 480 parishes is an obligation under the regulation governing the Multi-band Auction, which saw participation by the three mobile operators; under this regulation, Optimus, TMN and Vodafone are bound to ensure mobile broadband coverage in parishes lacking such coverage, according to the amount of spectrum allocated to each provider at the auction in the 800 MHZ band. As such, each operator will have to cover 160 parishes selected from the list now provided by ANACOM.

Vodafone will be first to make its selection, having a period of 30 days to do so, following ANACOM's notification. After Vodafone has made its selection, ANACOM will call on TMN to make its selection, in the same period, after which it will provide Optimus with the list of remaining parishes.

The 480 parishes on ANACOM's list are those whose seats have no or very low levels of mobile broadband coverage, as are clearly insufficient to ensure that users have adequate access to mobile broadband services.

ANACOM's approved list of parishes, as well as the methodology used to identify the parishes, are now submitted to the prior hearing of Optimus, TMN and Vodafone, as well as to the general consultation procedure, for a period of 20 working days.