Before the 5th mobile radio generation (5G) is ready to start, the necessary frequencies must still be allocated by the Federal Network Agency to all mobile carriers as part of a bidding process. With its supply requirements published on 26.11.2018, the Federal Network Agency has set the course for the future mobile radio standard in the 3.6 GHz spectrum. However, not all obligations are directly related to the new 5G technology. For example, mobile carriers could already ensure the required coverage of 98% of all households in 2022 with at least 100 Mbit/s through LTE Advanced. Directly related 5G conditions can be found in the requirement that by the end of 2022 at least 1,000 5G base stations have to be deployed. At the same time, the Federal Network Agency is obliging mobile carriers to distribute this minimum number of 5G base stations proportionally to the size of each federal state - our graph shows that up to 594 base stations per state would be mandatory by then.
From an economic point of view, such an expansion would presumably be done first in densely populated areas. An example based on the largest cities per federal state shows that coverage in those cities can reach up to 92%. The mentioned obligation can be particularly beneficial for cities in large federal states (e.g., Hannover).
It turns out that only a fraction of the households in each state can be reached with such 5G obligations (reaching from 0.4% in Berlin to a maximum of 10% in Bavaria). Especially in German city states, it can be assumed that the actual number of 5G base stations will be significantly higher. The expansion is likely to progress faster than the obligation suggests as for example Deutsche Telekom announced already to serve at least 99% of all households with 5G by the end of 2025.