Why Is Government Revising Pricing Of 4G And 5G Spectrum Bands?

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The much-awaited 5G spectrum auction is likely to happen soon as the government is looking for ways to reduce the price of airwaves. The DoT is reportedly looking at a new price for 700 MHz, 3.3-3.6 GHz, 26 GHz, and 28 GHz bands, which are expected to support the upcoming technology.

 
Why Is Government Revising Pricing Of 4G And 5G Spectrum Bands?

In addition, the telecom ministry wants a new price for 4G bands, including 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, and 2300 MHz. However, consultation takes time and it might be tough for TRAI to meet January-February, 2022.

It is worth noting that this development comes after the Department of Telecommunication realized that high spectrum price is the main reason behind financial stress in the telecom sector.

"We have received a detailed reference from DoT about 2-3 days back, seeking our recommendations on spectrum matters and pricing...there are a number of spectrum bands involved, and the Authority is currently examining the reference and will respond to the government," Trai secretary V Raghunandan was quoted by ET. However, he declined to give further details.

Reliance Jio And Airtel Might Participate In Auction

Meanwhile, analysts believe that due to the four-year moratorium on dues will allow Reliance Jio and Airtel to participate in the auction as their financial conditions are better. On the other hand, Vodafone-Idea might take active participation in the auction as it fails to raise the money.

The report also said that TRAI might require extra details to start the consultation procedure and after getting the reference from the Department of Telecommunication, TRAI might take four weeks for consulting the matter with all stakeholders and two weeks for the counter comments, then there will be an open discussion. In fact, this whole procedure will take close to five months.

 

It is important to note that telcos are conducting 5G trials in India for the last two months and are expected to complete the whole procedure soon. However, without proper spectrum bands, telcos will not be able to offer or start their services to their customers, which is why, we expect that the government might conduct an auction soon, in case DoT wants telcos to launch services before August 15th, 2022.

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