5G networks are yet to go live in India. There are multiple reasons for the delay of the next-generation network rollout in India. While other nations have already come out with live commercial 5G networks, India is still in the testing phase. However, even after the trials are finished, the rollout of 5G will depend a lot on the spectrum auction that is expected to take place in the first half of 2022. The government and the sector regulator needs to ensure that the spectrum is availed to the telcos at a fair price.
5G Spectrum Auction Should See Reduced Price for 700 MHz Band
The 5G spectrum auctions are a long way from here. One thing that the government and the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) need to ensure is the pricing of the spectrum is fair and not too expensive.
The evidence is right in front of the industry and the officials. The telcos won’t bid for the spectrum in the 700 MHz band because of its high pricing. For multiple auctions now, there have been no bidders for the 700 MHz band. The reason is its steep pricing. Telcos need the spectrum at an affordable price so that they can roll out the 5G networks within their planned budget.
If the costs of rolling out the next generation telecom network are too high, the telco’s won’t have any other option but to increase the price of services and that will directly affect the end consumer.
Further, the other bands such as the mmWave spectrum and the mid-bands should be available in sufficient quantity and at a feasible price so that the telcos can show the true power of 5G in India. If the pricing is too high, the telco’s will just keep using their 4G core for providing 5G services with the help of Dynamic Spectrum Sharing (DSS) technology.