5G Spectrum Auction Approved by Cabinet

Bharti Airtel had earlier said that it would just leverage the 4G airwaves it has for 5G and not participate in the 5G spectrum auction heavily if the pricing of the spectrum is not decent. This is something that every other private telecom operator can do as well.

Highlights

  • India’s soon going to see 5G spectrum auction.
  • Once the DoT has released NIA, it takes at least 8 weeks or close to two months for the spectrum auction to begin.
  • Right now, the major thing that’s bugging for the telcos is the matter of private 5G networks.

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India’s soon going to see a 5G spectrum auction. The Cabinet has finally given the nod for it. There’s no official announcement yet, but the sources tell BusinessToday that the Union Cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved spectrum pricing for the 5G auction on Tuesday. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) will immediately start working on releasing Notice Inviting Applications (NIA).

Once the DoT has released NIA, it takes at least eight weeks or close to two months for the spectrum auction to begin. Considering that, it would be safe to assume that India’s not getting the commercial 5G network before or by August 15, 2022. The Union Cabinet has gone ahead with the pricing recommendation for spectrum provided by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI).

This means that the telcos will have no other option than to spend heavy money in the spectrum auction if they want the airwaves or just participate in a mild manner.

Airtel Had Said it Won’t Participate Heavily If Pricing is Not Good

Bharti Airtel had earlier said that it would just leverage the 4G airwaves it has for 5G and not participate in the 5G spectrum auction heavily if the pricing of the spectrum is not decent. This is something that every other private telecom operator can do as well.

Right now, the major thing that’s bugging the telcos is the matter of private 5G networks. The Communication Ministry has reportedly supported the idea of allocating airwaves directly to the enterprises for rolling out captive private 5G.

This is going to be a major revenue loss for the telcos and something that might push them away from the idea of heavily investing in 5G. Every telco is banking on making incremental revenues from 5G via enterprise services. Consumer-related network services can be fulfilled by 4G itself. 5G is something that’s going to benefit enterprises more.

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