A brief look at the terms and timeline for Spectrum Auction 2022

The last date for submission of applications is 8th July while the final list of bidders will be released on 20th July. The auction will commence on 26th July and initial 5G rollouts are expected in August.

Estimated reading time: 1 minute, 56 seconds

The DoT has released the official document with all the details about the upcoming mega spectrum auction which will see 9 spectrum bands being put up for sale and where telecom operators will bid for rights to use the coveted airwaves for the next 20 years. The focus of this year’s auction will be on 5G airwaves which will enable the operators to offer ultra-high speed and low latency data connectivity to its

The notice inviting applications (NIA) was released on 15th June and it outlines the details about the quantum of airwaves being put up for sale, the reserve price per block of spectrum, the minimum number of blocks which need to be bid for by the operator in a particular band in a circle and the earnest money deposit (EMD) needed to be eligible to place the bids.

Issue of Notice Inviting Applications (NIA)15/06/2022
Pre-bid Conference20/06/2022
Last date for seeking clarifications on NIA22/06/2022
Clarifications to NIA30/06/2022
Last date for submission of Applications08/07/2022
Publication of Ownership details of Applicants12/07/2022
Bidder Ownership Compliance Certificate14/07/2022
Pre-qualification of Bidders18/07/2022
Last date for withdrawal of Applications19/07/2022
Final List of bidders20/07/2022
Mock Auction22/07/2022
Start of the Auction26/07/2022
Payment of the Successful Bid AmountWithin 10 calendar
days of the issue of
demand note
Timeline for Spectrum auction 2022

The NIA contains the details about the rollout obligations for the various frequency bands and the payment schedule to be followed. In this auction, the operators have been given the option to pay the spectrum fee either upfront or in 20 instalments which will be due annually with the first one being due immediately after the conclusion of the auction with no moratorium period. Operators would be allowed to surrender spectrum won in this auction after 10 years of assignment.

The spectrum usage charges (SUC) for spectrum won in this auction has been kept at 0% which will help operators save on their annual outgo expenses. For operators who buy mid-band and mm-wave spectrum in bulk, the effective SUC including spectrum won in previous auctions will become negligible.

Operators though will be cautious about buying mm-wave spectrum in bulk, since the use case for the enterprise segment remains limited as DoT has allowed tech companies to buy spectrum directly from DoT to set up the captive 5G networks in their premises. Operators would focus more on the mid-band n78 spectrum for commercial 5G rollouts.

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Avatar of Esmail Beguwala
Esmail Beguwala


Esmail is passionate about the Telecom spectrum, Broadband data services, and video streaming devices. You can find him binge-watching shows on OTT apps while sipping a cup of coffee when not writing an article.

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No news of the auction?

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No news of the auction?

I'll do the day 1 report shortly.

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  1. @Esmail what are your views on telcos launching 5G as early in August of this year. Can it happen practically?

    • Yes it is possible in metro cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore, Chennai, etc. And I say this because unlike other generation upgrades where the telcos had to buy the telecom gear and set up the towers after the spectrum allotment, this time all the infrastructure is already in place since the 4G towers are already 5G ready as operators are using single RAN network and it will be just the flick of a switch to turn on the 5G network. Operators have been given the 5G test spectrum since almost a year and they had plenty of time to use it and test the network stability and capacity. It’s like the 5G network already exists in these cities but it’s in test phase and in August it will just be converted to commercially available networks and you can just go to your operators gallery and swap you sim card with a 5G enabled one and insert it in your 5G handset and enjoy upgraded speeds if you live in these cities.
      Ofcourse a nation wide rollout will take a couple of years and even then it will be limited to urban areas while rural areas will have to rely on LTE network.

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