Cabinet Approves Auction of 5G Spectrum

The spectrum with a validity period of 20 years will be put to auction by the end of July, 2022

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The Union cabinet chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved a proposal of the Department of Telecommunications to conduct a spectrum auction. The spectrum will be assigned to the successful bidders for providing 5G services to public and enterprises.

A total of 72097.85 MHz of spectrum with a validity period of 20 years will be put to auction by the end of July, 2022. The auction will be held for spectrum in various Low (600 MHz, 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz), Mid (3300 MHz) and High (26 GHz) frequency bands. It is expected that the mid and high band spectrum will be utilized by Telecom Service Providers to roll-out 5G technology-based services capable of providing speed and capacities which would be about 10 times higher than what is possible through the current 4G services.

Digital connectivity has been an important part of policy initiatives of the government through its flagship programs such as Digital India, Startup India, Make in India etc.

Broadband, especially mobile broadband, has become an integral part of the daily lives of the citizens. This received a big boost through the rapid expansion of 4G services across the country since 2015. Eighty crore subscribers have access to broadband today compared to ten crore subscribers in 2014. Through such path breaking policy initiatives, the government has been able to promote access to mobile banking, online education, telemedicine, e-Ration etc. to Antyoday families.

"The 5G test bed setup in 8 top technology institutes of India is speeding up the launch of domestic 5G technology in India. The PLI (production-linked incentives) schemes for mobile handsets, telecom equipment and the launch of the India Semiconductor Mission is expected to help build a strong ecosystem for the launch of 5G services in India," said a statement.

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Earlier, the telecom operators such as Reliance Jio, Airtel, Vodafone-Idea were pitting against Telecom Regulatory Authority of India's (TRAI) decision to consider tech companies such as Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Google, Amazon, Cisco for the deployment of captive business networks.

Read more: The 5G Bottleneck