Nepal Telecom, the state-run telecom operator in Nepal, has reportedly put the plans for 5G trials on hold. The telecom player is not too excited about the 5G trials because there aren't sufficient 5G devices in the market. If there are no compatible phones, then there's no immediate need for 5G in Nepal. According to a report from The Kathmandu Post, Shobhan Adhikari, a Nepal Telecom spokesperson, there is a very small number of phones that are compatible and present in Nepal to connect with the mobile networks in the 2600 MHz frequency.
What's interesting is that the operator had already set up the equipment required to conduct the trial and received permission from the Nepal Telecommunications Authority to go ahead with it. Note that the trials haven't been cancelled but just put on hold for a future period. The report mentioned that the operator would spend the next three months identifying the number of mobile phones and other devices that support 5G.
Nepal Telecom had plans to launch 5G in 2022. However, due to delays, now that should happen in mid or late 2023 after the trials are done. However, what's interesting here is that Nepal Telecom isn't looking at the B2B opportunities that 5G presents.
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5G is an Opportunity to Grow Enterprise Business
5G isn't like other previous traditional mobile network technology. With 5G, telecom companies have an opportunity to tap into the enterprise business as well. The innovative use cases of 5G that have been proven in several international markets are proof enough that it can be monetised in way more manners than 4G could ever be.
Nepal Telecom will definitely look to launch 5G as soon as possible. However, the state-owned telecom operator must not look at it in a linear manner with the perspective of revenues from direct consumers only. 5G presents opportunities that no other mobile network technology ever has.