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DoT issues guidelines for regulatory sandboxes in equipment testing

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has issued guidelines for introduction of regulatory sandboxes aimed at simplifying equipment testing procedures. It has also scrapped operating license requirement for establishing, maintaining, or working of telecommunications including radio equipment, in a move designed to save time for telecom service providers.

The developments were announced by telecom minister Ashwini Vaishnaw on Monday at the curtain raiser of the India Mobile Congress, an annual event. The minister highlighted the government’s commitment to continuous reform in the telecom industry, seeking suggestions for further improvements.

“Now an easy portal-based (Saral Sanchaar) permission will be provided where spectrum would be used by colleges or institutions, by paying ₹1,000 they get permission for testing the equipment. This regulatory sandbox was designed to foster innovation and remove bottlenecks,” the minister said.

The India Mobile Congress will be held during 15-19 October this year, Vaishnaw said, encouraging industry collaboration with organizations like Nasscom and MAIT to expand the event’s scope.

With a target of 1,000 exhibitors, the event aims to spotlight cutting-edge technologies, including artificial intelligence, quantum technology, and the circular economy, along with advancements in 5G and 6G, cloud and edge computing, Internet of Things (IoT), semiconductors, cybersecurity, green tech, satcom, and electronics manufacturing.

Vaishnaw added that the World Telecommunication Standardization Assembly (WTSA 2024) will convene in India from 15-24 October 2024, preceded by Global Standards Symposium (GSS 2024) on 14 October in the national capital.

This assembly, organized by the Telecommunication Standardization Bureau of the International Telecommunication Union, is held every four years to outline the standardization programme for the forthcoming period. The assembly’s convening in India underscores the country’s crucial role in guiding the development of emerging technologies such as 6G, IoT, and AI.

At the event, the DoT inked an MoU with telecom gear maker Ericsson to foster a skilled workforce adept in emerging technologies through the “Ericsson Educate” programme. This initiative, focused on digital skill enhancement, will benefit 10,000 students across 100 institutes that house 5G use case labs, providing them with essential knowledge in automation, telecommunications, AI, IoT, 5G, and machine learning.

The collaboration aims to nurture competencies within the student and startup communities, with Ericsson granting access to its educational platform and materials at no cost. Livemint

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