Telecom Minister remarks India in discussion with 18 countries for 4G/5G implementation
According to Telecom Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, India is talking to 18 countries that are interested to implement the 4G/5G technology stack. He also said that by December 2024, the entire country will get 5G coverage.
"These are some of the best (countries) in the world (that are looking to adopt thestack)," Vaishnaw told reporters. "This is a 4G/5G stack which is upgradable. What we have installed, that same device will be doing 5G also. Technology has to be tested, ruggedised, then only we will move to the next. That's why we are doing 4G first (with Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd.) and then 5G."
He further said that in phase I of 5G rollout the government was aiming to cover 200 districts by March 31 but had already touched 387 districts.
Vaishnaw also said that India has already got 100 patents for 6G telecom technology. “So this is a journey which is going to be very exciting to see.”
The minister was at a briefing to announce that the Indian government had received the 2023 Government Leadership Award at the Groupe Speciale Mobile Association (GSMA)'s Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona. The GSMA is an association representing the mobile operators and global mobile industry.
"Our next major target is getting the Telecom Bill passed in the coming Monsoon session," Vaishnaw said. "That will lead to a major series of reforms, in terms of spectrum, licences, regulation. There will be a significant reform because of the Bill."
A major clause of the draft Bill was to regulate OTT communication players such as WhatsApp and Signal from a national security and consumer safety standpoint.
While answering to a query about the mobile phone operators’ demand that OTT communication application players should pay telcos for using the mobile network, Vaishnaw said similar discussions are happening globally. “These are new changes that are happening all over the world. Telecom is always global… let's see how the world moves.”
The net result of the overall reforms is evident in the country’s ranking in speed test index by third-party testing companies, Vaishnaw said.
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