Latest data released by the Department of Telecommunications show that India had about 102,000 5G Base Stations (BTS), commonly called 5G radios, as of March 5.
Maharashtra, Uttar Pradesh and Tamil Nadu had the highest number of installed BTS, the data shows.
A BTS is a fixed radio transceiver in any mobile network, most often installed on mobile towers.
The two telecom companies currently racing for 5G domination, Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel, are putting up 5G BTS rapidly in cities across the country. The total number of installed BTS stood at 84,346 on February 16, 2023, up from 20,980 on December 20, 2022.
The government had earlier mandated the two telcos to put up at least 10,000 BTS per week.
Currently, 5G is being introduced in India on two different technological platforms. In the Standalone (SA) mode, the network is built only on 5G, while in the Non-Standalone (NSA) mode, it is built as a top-up on an existing layer of the 4G radio network.
While Reliance Jio has launched its 5G network on the SA mode, Bharti Airtel has opted for NSA. As a result, industry experts have pointed out that Reliance Jio would need to instal more BTS than Bharti Airtel. Business Standard