5G Trial to Get Delayed Again as Telecom Operates Need Time to Submit Proposals


The 5G tests in India might be delayed further as telecom titans — Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel and Vodafone India — are intending to seek expansion on the January 10 deadline to present their programs for the same.

On December 31, DoT urged telecom operators to present their proposal for leading 5G trials and assigned a deadline of 10 days. Since the deadline is practically here and the telcos haven’t presented their projects, 5G trials in India will possibly be delayed. The top 3 telecom executives in the country are looking to attempt deadline expansion from DoT. 

Nokia’s head of India business Sanjay Malik assumes the earliest 5G rollouts in India in late 2020. However, he stated that the health of the business needs to be fixed quickly or it will be very challenging for the industry to invest and get new technology.

Pointing up to the release of the deadline, there was a dispute if Chinese telecom gear creators like Huawei and ZTE should be entitled to participate in the 5G trials, but the state has now freed Huawei and ZTE to take part in India’s 5G trials. That stated, Vodafone is expected to pick Ericsson and Huawei as its associates to manage 5G trials. On the other hand, Airtel is supposed to pick Nokia, Huawei, and Ericsson to manage the same. Further, Reliance Jio is supposed to carry forward its important partnership with Samsung to examine the 5G network in India.

The fifth-generation cellular network technology will allow the most high-speed mobile internet speeds in India, along with moderate latency. 5G networks are required to give download speeds of up to 1Gbps.

While 5G networks are supposed to be launched in India by 2020, there is still no solid date or timeline in this view. None of the telecom operators or government leaders have set a time for the spectrum sale. Telecom players are also dubious about spending heavily on 5G infrastructure, mainly due to various administrative and policy-related issues that have affected revenue.

However, once in position, 5G technology is supposed to create a combined economic impact of $1 Tn in India by 2035. Swedish multinational telecom Ericsson predicts that 5G equipped digitalization revenue potential in India will be above $27 Bn by 2026.

DoT Will assign Trial Spectrum to Telcos After Testing Their Plans

Once telcos present their proposal to the DoT, it will designate the trial spectrum and the telcos can pick their vendor to lead the trials. There has been an immense debate going on whether Chinese telecom equipment makers like Huawei and ZTE should be permitted to compete in the 5G trials. The government last month released Huawei and ZTE to take part in India’s 5G trials which are supposed to fall in the first half of 2020.

It is already a piece of public news that Vodafone Idea will select Ericsson and Huawei as its allies to conduct 5G trials, whereas Bharti Airtel will watch after Nokia, Huawei, and Ericsson to carry the same. Reliance Jio Infocomm is assumed to carry forward its important partnership with Samsung to examine the 5G network in India. State-run telco, BSNL, will possibly go with ZTE to disposing 5G in the country.

5G field trials in India have been paused for nearly a year now, owing to various issues like pricing and no transparency on Chinese vendors taking part in the tests. Finally, the government has removed all the issues and urged telcos to come up with the expected proposal. But telcos are now looking for more time which will stop the 5G field trials in the country.

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