DoT Pushes for More 5G Spectrum, Asks DoS and Defence Ministry to Vacate Airwaves

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The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has requested the Department of Space (DoS) and the defence ministry to vacate airwaves in the medium and high range spectrum bands for the 5G services rollout. The three parties met to discuss the spectrum issues under a committee led by the Cabinet Secretary Rajiv Gauba. Initially, the 5G spectrum auction was slated to take place in 2020. However, the issues related to the spectrum allocation between the three parties has led to the delay in the 5G spectrum auction to 2021. More on the story ahead.

DoT Asks Defence Ministry to Desert 100 MHz of Spectrum in 3300-3400 MHz Frequency Band

As per a PTI report, DoT has asked the defence ministry to vacate the 100 MHz of spectrum in the frequency band of 3300-3400 MHz and opt to use frequency band of 3000-3100 MHz. At the same time, DoT has asked DoS to vacate the frequency band of 3600-3700 MHz.

This request by DoT is to ensure that the telecom operators of India can roll out 5G services in the way it should be.

“The DoT is now looking for 400 MHz of contiguous spectrum in the medium band which can be efficiently utilised by telecom operators to meet standard broadband speed for 5G services,” a government official related to the matter told PTI.

As per the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai), per megahertz of spectrum in the 3600-3700 MHz band should be priced at Rs 492 crore. Trai has further suggested that the spectrum bands should be put into the block size of 20 MHz for the auction. So based on this, the telcos will have to spend at least Rs 9,840 crores pan-India basis to purchase spectrum in the 3300-3600 MHz band.

But the telecom operators have highlighted that the price put forth by Trai is very expensive. Bharti Airtel even said that it won’t bid in the auction for the spectrum at all if the price remains the same. However, the government is considering reducing the price of the 5G spectrum to be held in 2021.

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