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After signing an agreement with Nokia, ZTE and Coriant to chart a path for 5G and IoT in India, State-run telecom operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) is all set to sign Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Swedish telecom gear maker Ericsson next month.
"Keeping the roadmap for 5G and IOT, MOU was signed with Nokia, ZTE, Coriant and now we'll be doing the same with Ericsson as well," BSNL CMD Anupam Shrivastava told Gizbot in a exclusive interaction.
He added, "Talks are already over and we'll be announcing the same within fortnight or so."
"If you talk about 5G it is as early as one year and as late as three years," he replied when asked about when 5G will come.
Meanwhile, Ericsson has also recently confirmed that it is in talks with Indian telecom on the 5G front. The company said that it has already signed 36 such MOU with global telecom operators.
On tying up with other device makers for the bundled 4G feature phone, Shrivastava said, " We are talking to Lava for the same and i think there is one MOU with them as well."
He said, "Now the ball is in their court we have already purpose to Lava but now it appears that their hands are full at this point of time maybe they have hit the capacity already."
4G feature phone from Micromax which is branded as "BHARAT-1", is available at Rs. 22,00/- and has all facilities which are required for the 4G user. BSNL has bundled a voucher worth Rs 97/- per month which provides unlimited voice and unlimited data to the consumer. This combination of BSNL and Micromax is perhaps one of the most reasonable cost-effective mobile bundling available in the market at present.
The product has already hit the market and it is picking up quite well, Shrivastava said when asked about the response.
BSNL has more than 100 million mobile customers, 10 million broadband customers, and 16 million landline customers. The telco is also providing various enterprise services like lease line, VSAT and various managed services. Recently BSNL has also taken advance steps to play the major role in Smart City and Virtual Network Operation (VNOs) of Government.