India should focus on covering the 2G and 4G users to 5G at the earliest, said Mukesh Ambani, Chairman and Managing Director, Reliance Industries Limited (RIL). Speaking at the Indian Mobile Congress (IMC) 2021, Ambani said that keeping millions of Indians at the bottom of the socio-economic pyramid confined to 2G is depriving them of the digital revolution. According to the Indian business tycoon, the rollout of 5G networks should be the topmost priority of India. Ambani further said that Jio’s future proof network could be easily and quickly converted from 4G to 5G.
USOF Should be Tapped into For Subsidising Devices for Select Groups
There are many people who can’t purchase smartphones or other connectivity devices because they can’t afford them. That is why Ambani has called for tapping into the Universal Services Obligation Fund (USOF) to subsidise devices for select target groups. This will ensure that people, even at the low-income levels, can be a part of India’s digital revolution.
It is not just the services that need to become affordable, but also the devices in the hands of the users. Further, Ambani said that India needs to focus on expanding fiber coverage as fast as possible. Ambani said that if all the players in the industry work together, India can rapidly achieve a nationwide footprint of broadband coverage.
Lastly, Ambani said that there’s a need for a radical transformation of India’s energy systems. Clean and green energy at low costs will be required to fuel the technology in the coming years. While connectivity is important to focus on, one must not forget about the critical components of the digital ecosystem.
During the COVID-19 times, Jio was able to introduce fiber connectivity to over five million homes in India. To be future-ready, India needs to have a nationwide broadband footprint as it has almost unlimited data carriage capacity. But it will require everyone in the industry to pitch in.