Chinese telecom-gear maker Huawei said it will start 5G trials in India from December with a leading telecom operator, as it recently received the ‘go-ahead’ from the Department of Telecommunications (DoT).
On September 27, the DoT invited the company for the trials. Huawei is awaiting for 100MHz of 3300-3600 MHz bands for the initial trials, Jay Chen, Chief Executive Officer of Huawei India told BusinessLine.
“We have got the invitation for the 5G trials from the government and through the proposed trials, we plan to contribute for development of timely and high-quality 5G technology and use cases that will enable social and economic development,” he said. The initial trials will begin with fixed wireless access, enhanced mobile broadband, Augmented Reality (AR), Virtual Reality (VR), WTTx (advanced wireless access), which is delivering fibre quality broadband in wireless mode, and ultra high definition video transfer in one of the metro cities (Delhi), followed by a few more cities, Chen said.
The company had already partnered with Bharti Airtel in February to complete 5G laboratory testing and is in talks now with other operators including Reliance Jio.
Chinese vendors including Huawei and ZTE were barred by the government for various telecom projects including the 5G trials because of security concerns.
However, now the government has given a ‘thumbs up’ to Huawei along with its local partners. There is no clarity about ZTE yet.
Both the Chinese companies were recently barred by the US and Australia from 5G roll-outs due to possible cyber snooping by China.
On asked about such concerns, Chen said the Indian government is open and transparent and, Huawei also abides by the law of the land.
“There is a close relationship between the government, operators and the vendors to grow the ecosystem in the industry. Huawei is committed to ‘Digital India’ and will actively cooperate with the 5G planning and preparation of Indian government and industry,” Chen said adding that there lies a lot of opportunities in the telecom industry in the next five years.
Apart from Huawei, the DoT has already approached other telecom gear makers including Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung, Cisco and NEC for development of 5G applications and running trials on the suggestion of Stanford University Professor Emeritus Arogyaswami J Paulraj.
Paulraj is a member of the 5G panel that recently suggested spectrum roadmap for the technology.
The TRAI has recommended auction of about 8,644 MHz of telecom frequencies at an estimated base price of ₹4.9 lakh crore.
The government is expected to auction spectrum in various bands including those for 5G towards the end of next year. – The Hindu Business Line