Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has been testing 4G services in Kerala circle for a while now. Earlier this year, we reported about BSNL’s 4G soft launch in Idukki district of Kerala. Back then, the service was made available for users via existing 3G U-SIMs 256K modules, but now, the telco is providing 4G USIM cards so that users can experience 4G. Another thing worth noting is the service availability. According to the information we have, BSNL 4G is now available at 250 towers in Idukki district of Kerala. That said, users will be able to latch onto 2G and 4G, and not 3G because all the 3G towers are now turned off in Idukki district. Furthermore, a reader (name: Matthew) of TelecomTalk has posted a screenshot of a 4G test conducted on BSNL 4G network and the speeds are on-par with other private telcos’ 4G speeds.
BSNL 4G Achieves Download Speed Close to 20 Mbps
As you can see in the image below, the 4G download speed on BSNL network is 18.1 Mbps while the upload speed was 5.98 Mbps. That said, these speeds are on-par with other private telcos such as Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio. But in some areas, Airtel and Jio deliver far superior speeds which BSNL may not achieve with the current spectrum it has. What’s more interesting is the upload speed on BSNL 4G which is pretty much close to 6 Mbps. Private telcos often stumble in the upload speed department. For example, in my area, Airtel offers download speeds of over 20 Mbps, but the upload speeds never cross 2 Mbps, which is underwhelming. Amongst the private telcos, Idea Cellular offers the best upload speeds, followed by Vodafone, according to Trai and OpenSignal.
BSNL 4G USIM Available in Kerala
As of now, BSNL is offering 4G services in Idukki region of Kerala. The telco had converted all its 250 towers in the region to 4G ones and it has entirely scrapped the 3G network. So if you have an old SIM card, the chances are that you’ll end up using BSNL’s 2G network. To avoid that, you can head over to any BSNL’ store in the region to avail a BSNL 4G SIM card. The BSNL 4G USIM costs Rs 20 and the activation can be done via Tele-verification.
BSNL 4G Services Also Available in Nagpur Rural Area
While users in Idukki district of Kerala are enjoying the long-awaited 4G services from BSNL, it’s unknown when the telco will be rolling the same on a pan-India basis. Very recently, the state-run telco has started providing 4G services in Nagpur rural area and Bhiwapur is the first region to get 4G in the said region. For those who want to enjoy BSNL 4G services in Nagpur, they can head over to the nearest BSNL store to get a 4G SIM card.