A few days back, Mr Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries Limited said that he wants to make India ‘2G mukt’ country. There are still over 300 million people using the 2G network in India and that has to change because they don’t get access to the same benefits which the people using 3G or 4G do. But the government looks at 2G in a very different way. Even though it is an outdated network technology, the Indian government believes that if there is a demand then it needs to be catered by the telecom service providers. The government has no problem with 2G as of now.
Demand for 2G Means it is Going to Stay
As per an ET Telecom report, the Indian government has given telecom service providers the right of choice of technology for providing telecom services. Sanjay Dhotre, minister of State for Communications said in Lok Sabha, Wednesday, “The choice of technology for provision of telecom services are left to the service provider as per their respective business considerations.”
Even though the world is shifting to 5G, there are around 300 million Indian still using the 2G network. The government’s view of 2G is if the people need it and the telecom service providers want to provide the service of it, then there is no objection to it. Telecom service providers have the right to provide any kind of network they want to using the spectrum bands made available by the government.
Mr Mukesh Ambani had said that there is an urgent need of new stringent policy measures so that India can be made 2G free which started 25 years back. Mr Ambani led Reliance Industries Limited is working on developing homegrown 5G solutions through its subsidiary Reliance Jio and as soon as the spectrum is made available, Jio will start testing for 5G. As of now, there is no information on when the 5G spectrum auctions will be held, but as per the developments in the market, it feels like it won’t be this year. The government needs to bring down the price of the spectrum or else it will become too expensive for the telcos to bear the load.