A large number of 5G networks are currently being deployed across the nation. Telecom Secretary K Rajaraman presided over the meeting, which was attended by telecom service providers like Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, and Vodafone Idea. The telecom department met with operators to examine the increasing number of call drops and service quality-related issues as it thought through potential policy actions to enhance call quality.
On Call Drop, the DoT Dials Telcos
The meeting, which lasted almost two hours, covered the topics of Right of Way (RoW) issues and interference from unauthorised boosters. According to a report, operators provided the Department of Telecom (DoT) with a thorough presentation on the state of service quality today in comparison to predetermined benchmarks. The Department of Telecom is investigating legislative frameworks and policy-level steps that can guarantee a higher degree of service quality. As per the report, sources within the DoT said that the agency is taking a long-term approach to issues relating to service quality and has requested participants to pinpoint problem areas and offer potential policy changes that could enhance call connectivity.
Earlier this year, in September, Communications Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw suggested that the standards for telecom service quality may be tightened up to three to four times. Since a number of reforms have been made and more are being suggested, the minister had urged the sector, including telecom operators and infrastructure suppliers, to advance "full steam ahead" in enhancing the quality of services in the nation, thanks to PTI.
Vaishnaw had previously stated at an industry event on September 14 that he would ask the telecom department to send a new consultation paper to TRAI for significantly increasing the quality of service parameters, almost making 3X or 4X of what they are currently. As a result, whatever the quality of service is now would improve significantly. The DoT's discussion with telecom operators was primarily focused on identifying issue areas and requesting opinion on legislative measures and operational interventions that would promote greater service quality in the country, while telecom regulator Trai examines service quality rules.
Despite the fact that things have gotten better, according to DoT sources, more work has to be done. Trai is responsible for setting Quality of Service benchmarks, however DoT and the regulator have recently had informal discussions about the subject of service quality. When asked if the rate of 5G rollout and connection was a cause for concern, DoT sources responded that the discussion on Wednesday had nothing to do with 5G. Quality of service for 5G, whose rollout has barely started, is "a work in progress," they declared, adding that it will be 5 to 6 months before measurements begin.