Bharti Airtel, in a press conference on Thursday, stated that it can immediately roll out 5G in India, provided that it has adequate spectrums on hand, from the Indian government. The company believes it can do so, as it recently proved it’s 5G capabilities by a live 5G showcase in the city of Hyderabad.
How Was this Done?
This feat was achieved via its existing spectrum in the 1800 MHz band, via the NSA network technology. Airtel stated that it seamlessly operated 5G and 4G with the same spectrum, using a dynamic spectrum sharing model. This validated the readiness in all three domains of the network, namely Radio, Core and Transport.
During the event, the representatives of the company also provided us with some numbers, wherein they said that 5G is capable of providing 10x speeds, 10x latency and 100x concurrency when compared to existing technologies.
As a showcase of this, during the tests, they showed the ability to download a full-length movie in a matter of seconds, via a 5G phone on the 5G network. Do note, that the full impact of the 5G experience will be on offer when the adequate spectrum is available and government approvals received.
Why Do We Believe Airtel May Be First to Rollout 5G in India?
According to a previous press release, Bharti Airtel announced that it has the capability to operate 5G via its current spectrum in mid-bands (1800,2100,2300MHz) as well as sub-GHz bands (800/900 MHz)
While this might seem to a statement and not accounting too much, but, in reality, if the government permits, Airtel can operate 5G and 4G within the same spectrum, making 5G a reality in a matter of months.
The demonstration in Hyderabad also validated all the claims that were made by the company, proving that the company was not all talk and no show. This also stated that the company could fully deliver on 5G, that too before the end of the year.
With simple software upgrades to the infrastructure, Airtel could easily switch the existing infrastructure without any major costs. This would also help the rollout to be wider, rather than being limited to tier-1 cities.
Should You Go Out and Buy a 5G Phone Now?
No, these are proof of the capabilities that the telecom providers possess, but, if you take a look at the press conference and the statements made, Airtel still believes that changes can be made and, as of now, they do not have permission to roll out 5G.
This is a mere symbolism of the fact that when the company is given clearance, it will not require an additional waiting period, rather, the company will be ready to dive into the 5G crowd, making it accessible to the general consensus.