Why Telecom Operators Want DoT To Include 26 GHz And 28 GHz Bands In Revised NFAP?


5G trials might delay in India as Airtel, Reliance Jio, and Vodafone-Idea want the Government to sell millimetre wave bands in the auction. The Department of Telecommunication approved a millimetre spectrum band for the 5G trials. However, no decision has been taken on selling these bands.


Why Telecom Operators Want DoT To Include 26 GHz And 28 GHz Bands

All telecom operators state that they cannot spend time and effort to develop trials around on these bands unless the Government approves these bands for the auction. Besides, telecom operators want the Department of Telecommunication to introduce revised the National Frequency Allocation Plan (NFAP).

In addition, the telco asked DoT to include mmWave band airwaves in NFAP so that can get clear information regarding the trials and the auction.

"A reminder has just been sent to DoT that the revised NFAP has still not been finalized by its Wireless Planning & Coordination wing even after various meetings of the working groups were held and inputs provided by all stakeholders," said SP Kochhar, director-general of the COAI.

This update comes after DoT approved 5G trials in the country on several bands such as milimetre, 700 Mhz,800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, and 2500 MHz to start trials in the country.

5G Deployment Cost In India

It is worth noting that if mmWave is not included in the upcoming revised policy, then it might increase the cost of overall deployment of the 5G network. In addition, the 5G services might become unaffordable for consumers in the country.

Analysts said that the 26 GHz and 28 GHz bands provide speed up to 2 Gbps along with a huge capacity, which is important for 5G use cases and these bands are famous in other countries.

"Only after mmWaves are included in the revised NFAP, can DoT give a reference to TRAI to examine and start fresh consultations on all bands identified for 5G, relook at their pricing and make fresh recommendations for the next auction," a senior industry executive was quoted by ET.


Spectrum Auction Might Delay Further

It seems that the auction might delay further as the Government is still revising the NFAP policy. In fact, if we go by market sources, then the auction might delay by 12 to 18 months. This also means that telecom operators are not willing to invest in some technology, which might not be available in the auction.

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