Telecommunications giant America Movil has indicated that its rollout of 5G in Mexico may happen this year after a significant ruling from the country’s regulator the Federal Telecommunications Institute (IFT).
The IFT has approved the modification of 18 concession titles, a rather complicated way of saying that operator Telcel, the Mexican wireless telecommunications company owned by America Movil, can launch its anticipated 5G services within frequency bands in the 3450-3550MHz segment.
This permits Telcel to go ahead with what is likely to be the largest 5G commercial network in Latin America.
It won’t be cheap: Reuters notes that Telcel will pay Mexico more than 900 million pesos ($44.05 million) per year in fees for this permission. However, the billionaire owner of America Movil, Carlos Slim, is probably able to afford this sum and, in any case, he clearly sees 5G as a money-spinner for America Movil, one of the largest corporations in the world with interests, and subscribers, in more than 20 countries.
This announcement may also partly make up for the disappointment of the IFT recently barring America Movil from providing pay TV in Mexico.
This won’t be the first 5G network in the country, however. In December 2021, as we reported at the time, AT&T Mexico announced the beginning of the deployment of its 5G network in the country. It aims to deploy 5G in the main markets of Mexico, starting with the major cities, over the next three years.