Monday, November 28, 2022
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MNOs have yet to sign any 5G Access Agreement with DNB [Commentary]

This is a personal commentary about the current state of 5G in Malaysia.

mcmc 5g malaysia showcase 700mhz 5g

Unlike what the caretaker Finance Minister, Tengku Zafrul Aziz have previously said (also reported by the media), I don’t think most of the Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) have signed the 5G access agreement.

I also don’t think any MNOs will offer new commercial 5G services this month.

Here are few reasons for this delay:

1. Digital Nasional Berhad (DNB) has not a published a new Reference Access Offer (RAO). The current RAO has been rejected by 4 major Mobile Network Operators (MNOs).

If the current RAO wasn’t agreed, how was it possible for the MNOs to approve the 5G access agreement?

2. The 5G access agreement must be approved by the shareholders/board of the MNOs. This takes time for Maxis, Celcom, Digi U Mobile and unifi Mobile. The current official dateline for this is 30 October 2022 (but this may change since none of the deadlines were followed in the past).

Perhaps the caretaker Finance Minister would like to list down the “6 Telcos” that have signed the 5G access agreement? or perhaps he was confused between Letter of Intent (signed by the MNOs) and 5G access agreement?

3. From what I have heard, MOF and KKOM are unable to work together- there are no cooperation/understanding. How will it be possible for DNB to make its own decisions, including appointment of contractors were billions are involved?

This has also affected matters like MSQoS (standards for Quality of Service for 5G) which is covered by the Access Agreement. Who will be responsible if 5G coverage and speeds are not up to standards? This has not been finalised yet (MNOs wants a guarantee that high 5G standards are delivered to consumers).

More 5G User Trials

While there is a possibility that MNOs may offer commercial 5G services this month (once the 5G access agreement are signed with DNB), I think its highly unlikely due to the reasons above.

Perhaps there will be more 5G user trials this month since the MNOs may still gain free access to the DNB 5G network.

In my own opinion, public servants should be more responsible in making any public statement. They should also be held accountable for missed deadlines and broken promises.

Moving forward (with the new Government), I hope the NEW Ministry of Finance will no longer be involved in matters related to the Communications industry.

Article being updated.

This is a commentary. The views/comments/opinions expressed here are those of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the view of MalaysianWireless.

 

Kugan
Kugan is the co-founder of MalaysianWireless. He has been observing the mobile industry since 2003. Connect with him on Twitter: @scamboy

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