Vodafone Germany and Telefonica Deutschland have agreed on a pilot project to connect their mobile phone sites to each other’s fibre-optic backhaul lines, enabling more customers to benefit directly from high-speed 4G LTEdata coverage. From July 2018, the first shared or neighbouring mobile phone sites will be connected to the respective fibre-optic broadband networks, with around 100 locations set to be connected in the first pilot phase. According to the two companies, the cooperation may also serve as a building block to better prepare the mobile networks for the future technology 5G.
At the same time, Telefonica has agreed to sell to Vodafone 42MHz of unused spectrum in the 3.5GHz band, reducing its 3.5GHz spectrum holding from 84MHz to 42MHz. Vodafone may use the newly-acquired spectrum to expand its network until the rights of use expire in 2021. The parties have agreed not to disclose the financial details of the transaction.