BSNL, the state-run telecom service provider, is planning to invest Rs 2,000 crore for the upgradation and expansion of its network. Under the expansion, the PSU will add 21,000 BTS, including 13,000 BTS for 3G services. The Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that around 660 telephone exchanges have already been upgraded to NGN (Next Generation Network) from PSTN (public switched telephone network) exchanges.
The NGN technology is designed and manufactured locally by centre for development of telematics. The Minister also inaugurated several value added services (VAS) on NGN and a new innovative service called fixed mobile telephony (FMT) which enables customers to make and take calls while moving.
He said that the investment is part of the government’s initiative to modernize BSNL so as to make it relevant in the competitive environment which telecom sector is facing now. The telecom operator is now planning to deploy public Wi-Fi hotspots across the country covering all religious, tourist and important locations in the country. Under the first phase, 2,500 hotspots across India will be deployed.