TheANFR (National Frequency Agency) publishes its monthly observatory for the deployment of mobile antennas and accounts on June 1, 2015 near 21,000 4G sites authorized, including 17,493 in service, an increase of 1.2% during the month of May compared to the month of March.
The counting is done as follows in the three 4G bands:
- 11,281 sites in the 800 MHz band (+ 2.4%)
- 7,067 sites in the 1800 MHz band (+ 0.5%)
- 14,378 sites in the 2,600 MHz band (+ 1.4%)
If Orange remains largely at the head of deployments (7,480 4G sites in service) and Bouygues Telecom benefits from solid coverage thanks to the management of the 1800 MHz band (6,637 sites in total), ANFR observes that Free Mobile maintains its lead over Numericable-SFR with 3,678 sites for the first and 3,475 sites for the second.
We will remember, however, that free mobile only has 4G frequencies on the 2600 MHz band while Numericable-SFR deploys on this same band but especially on the 800 MHz band offering a greater range and therefore making it possible to cover more territory with fewer antennas (but also with lower flow rates).
Despite a lower number of 4G antennas in service, Numericable-SFR can therefore claim 4G coverage of the population much larger than that of Free Mobile which will have to continue to deploy a large number of antennas to come to the level of its competitors .
The auction of the frequencies of the 700 MHz band for 4G services this year will be particularly interesting to follow since it should allow Free Mobile to recover frequencies at long range and with good penetration in buildings, after having shunned the auction for the 800 MHz band.