Bouygues, Free, Orange & SFR apply for France’s new 5G spectrum

Arcep officials (Image credit: ARCEP / Brigitte Baudesson)

French regulator, Arcep, has today announced that companies Bouygues Telecom, Free Mobile, Orange and SFR have submitted applications for the allocation of frequencies in the 3.4 - 3.8 GHz band for 5G in mainland France.

5G commitments

“The four candidates each requested the allocation of one of the four 50 MHz blocks which will be allocated in return for the subscription to the commitments provided for by the procedure,” said Arcep in a press statement.

The French regulator specified commitments for telecoms companies looking to obtain frequency blocks of 50 MHz for 5G. These were: 5G at the service of the competitiveness of other sectors of the French economy, coverage inside buildings, fixed access offers, greater transparency in deployment forecasts and their breakdowns and lastly, to encourage innovation by all players in the sector.

5G Licences by June

Arcep is now examining the application files to ensure that they comply with the admissibility and qualification criteria for the procedure and will award the 5G licenses for France’s 50 MHz blocks phase by June.

“The frequencies still available after this phase of allocation of the 50 MHz blocks will be subject to a selection procedure by financial criterion which will take place in April so that the authorisations can be issued at the latest in June 2020,” stated Arcep.

Companies that have not submitted an application will not be able to participate in the allocation phase of the 50 MHz blocks and they’ll also be excluded in the allocation phase of the frequencies still available after this first phase

In November last year, a government minister said that Frances’s 5G spectrum would be sold at a floor price of €2.17 billion euros.

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Rachael Sharpe

Rachael is a British journalist with 17 years experience in the publishing industry. Since launching, she’s been freelancing, and working for some of the world’s best-loved websites and magazines including and and has also had a book, iPad for Photographers, published. A regular contributor at 5Gradar, Rachael is following the 5G market closely. Find out more at