Airtel To Invest $1 Billion In 4G Expansion; Partners With Nokia To Deploy 300,000 Radio Units


Airtel is all set to expand its 4G networks in the country. The telco has joined hands with Nokia to deploy the latter's technology in nine circles. The deal will allow Airtel to offer good networks in the rural part and will prepare for the upcoming networks, such as 5G.

Airtel To Invest $1 Billion In 4G Expansion; Partners With Nokia


Under this deal, both Airtel and Nokia will deploy 300,000 radio units in bands like 1800 Mhz, 2100 Mhz, 2300 Mhz, and 900 Mhz. The deployment is likely to be completed in the next two years. Besides, Nokia will use its AirScale Radio and BaseBand technologies.

"We have been working with Nokia for more than a decade now and are delighted to use Nokia's SRAN products in further improving the capacity and coverage of our network as we prepare for the 5G era," Gopal Vittal, Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (India and South Asia) at Airtel, said.

This is not the first time that Airtel has joined hands with Nokia. Previously, the telco has given a $500 million deal to Nokia for installing 4G technology in Gujarat, Bihar, and UP East.

"This is an important agreement for the future of connectivity. This project will enhance their current networks and deliver best-in-class connectivity to Airtel customers but also lay the foundations for 5G services in the future," said Rajeev Suri, President, and Chief Executive Officer at Nokia.

However, this time the company has not announced the investment details, but sources close to the development said that it is close to $1 billion. The telco has also announced its partnership with Ceragon, which enables the former to expand its reach in 4G rural and urban areas.

It is expected that India is likely to cross 920 million mobile customers in the next five years. This also includes 88 million 5G connection, and this announcement comes at that time when the demand for voice calls and data has been increased to many folds. In fact, Nokia said that the demand for data has been increased by 47 percent in the country. If we talk about Airtel than it seems that it is trying its level best to give tough competition to Reliance Jio.

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