The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has asked telecom regulators to expedite recommendations on pricing 5G spectrum, possibly before March, in light of the Prime Minister’s Office’s (PMO) desire for a ‘preliminary launch’ of next-generation services. In the country by 15 August.
“The PMO has requested the DoT to work towards the initial launch of 5G by August 15, 2022 and has also explored the possibility of getting the necessary recommendations from Trai before March 22,” DoT said in a letter to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India. Said. (TRAI) On February 22. “In view of the above, TRAI is requested to expedite the matter and make recommendations as soon as possible.”
The DoT’s nudge to the telecom regulator on 5G pricing comes within weeks of the telecom regulator holding a marathon open house consultation where Trai Chairman PD Vaghela had told stakeholders about the complexity of pricing the spectrum, which required a considerable amount of time to study.
In a letter to TRAI, DoT also mentioned the availability of additional spectrum in the 800 MHz, 900 MHz and 1800 MHz bands.
An additional 34 MHz of spectrum across the country in the 900 MHz band is available. This is in addition to the 65.2 MHz it has already sought regulatory pricing recommendations. In the 1800 Mhz band, it has provided 10 MHz spectrum in Haryana.
However, the quantum of how much additional bandwidth can be made available in the 800 Mhz band without any interference in the networks is divided into industries.
The telecom industry has termed the current price of 5G spectrum in the 3300 MHz-3600 MHz band – Rs492 per MHz – as recommended by TRAI, as exorbitant, and called for it to be drastically cut by as much as 95%. The government has also made it clear that it wouldn’t hesitate to rationalise the price of the coveted airwaves in order to make the availability of services affordable for users. Defence93