The Chief Technology Officer of Bharti Airtel Randeep Sekhon has made an appeal to the telecom regulatory authority of India (TRAI) for the affordable pricing of the 5G airwaves. The statement comes ahead of the regulatory body TRAI’s recommendations on spectrum auctions. According to a report from PTI, Sekhon said that 5G will have a mass appeal and should not be restricted to the premium segment only, as the market is prepping for the next-gen of devices with the upcoming cheaper 5G devices.
The Need for Affordable 5G Spectrum
Sekhon talked about the important role of pricing of the 5G radio waves. He informed that the expensive spectrum will result in limited cash flow with the telcos after the payment. However, he added that with reasonable pricing the operator will bring the same money on increasing footprint faster. 5G will not only promote immersive entertainment, industrial use cases, unlock new avenues in education and other areas but will also provide high-speed mobile connectivity.
TRAI is expected to make a final decision on the working of the 5G spectrum auctions as well as its pricing any day now, under the light of which Sekhon has appealed to keep the pricing reasonable. Sekhon further explained that there are multiple bands that have been going unsold because of their high pricing. Although Airtel’s CTO did not speak on what would be the reasonable pricing.
He further added that today 5G phone starts from Rs 15,000, and there are so many 5G phones in our network which is when the 5G network is yet not available. Sekhon expects that there will be a rush to launch low-cost 5G smartphones once the 5G network rollout is announced. He added that 5G penetration will gain momentum as soon as the services are available and the device ecosystem will also witness a boost resulting in overall costs reduction.
For those unaware, telecom service providers are conducting 5G trials in Delhi, Mumbai, Jamnagar, Ahmedabad, Kolkata, Chennai, Hyderabad, Bengaluru, Lucknow, Gurugram, Gandhinagar, Chandigarh, Pune and Varanasi, including urban, semi-urban and rural areas. The multinational telecommunications service provider Bharti Airtel recently put on display its 5G’s high-speed, low latency capabilities to recreate the in-stadia experience of Kapil Dev’s famous 175 not out vs Zimbabwe during the 1983 Cricket World Cup.