On Emerging Contractual Relationships for Local 5G Micro Operator Networks

Local 5G micro operator (uO) networks are emerging to satisfy local capacity, coverage, and context specific service needs in certain geographical locations to complement Mobile Network Operators’ (MNOs’) offerings. Conventionally, MNOs have been reluctant to allow entry to local 5G micro operators (uOs) as the latter can turn out to be a threat for MNOs. For successful emergence of uOs into the future mobile market, it is necessary to define the features of contractual relationships that will arise between the existing MNOs, uOs and the users for different uO deployment scenarios. In this paper, we propose these contract features, different kinds of competition that will emerge, and pricing mechanisms for these deployments. Finally, a mathematical model is used to analyze the impact of competition among uOs on the equilibrium wholesale price where the wholesale price refers to the price that the MNO needs to the pay a uO for serving its customers. From our results, it is found that competition in these networks can put downward pressure on the wholesale price and therefore brings about a reduction in it.