A key meeting of the Asia Pacific Telecommunity (APT) is scheduled next month in Brisbane to decide the future deployment of the 6 GHz spectrum band for 5G services in India. The meeting aims to build momentum for the collective push of all Region 3 nations, including India, to use the 6 GHz spectrum band for cost-effective rollout of 5G services. The final decision will be made at the World Radio Communications-2023 conference in Dubai in December.
Region 3 member nations, such as India, China, South Korea, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Australia, and New Zealand, are participating in the meeting. China recently allocated the 6 GHz band for 5G services, and Indian telcos and tech companies are vying to secure these airwaves.
Tech companies like Google, Meta, Amazon, Microsoft, Cisco, Qualcomm, Intel, and Netflix are advocating for the delicensing of the 6 GHz spectrum band to enhance affordable broadband penetration in rural India through WiFi. However, India’s top telecom operators, including Reliance Jio, Bharti Airtel, and Vodafone Idea, want this band to be auctioned and fully available for 5G services, both now and in the future.
The 6 GHz spectrum band, ranging from 5925 to 7125 MHz, offers internet speeds up to 10 Gbps. The APT meeting in Brisbane aims to align major wireless/spectrum matters and develop a common proposal for the WRC-2023 conference.
The Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) has highlighted that the 6 GHz band is vital for addressing evolving demands towards 2030, as it provides a balance of wide coverage and capacity necessary for efficient 5G mobile deployments in India. This spectrum band is also crucial for meeting the rapidly increasing data demands at affordable terms.
Both telcos and big tech companies have expressed their respective interests in the 6 GHz band due to its unique advantages. This meeting will play a significant role in harmonizing its usage and facilitating the development of a cost-efficient 5G devices and network ecosystem in the region. ISP