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DoT nod to telecom service providers for 5G technology trials

Mobile phone tower. Photo: DreamPixer/Pixabay

New Delhi, May 4 (MNN) The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) on Tuesday gave permission to Telecom Service Providers (TSPs) to conduct trials of 5G technology.

Applicants include Bharti Airtel Ltd, Reliance JioInfocomm Ltd, Vodafone Idea Ltd, and MTNL which have tied up with original equipment manufacturers and technology providers like Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung and C-DOT for the purpose.

In addition, Reliance JioInfocomm Ltd will conduct trials using its indigenous technology.

Permission was given by DoT as per the priorities and technology partners identified by TSPs themselves.

The experimental spectrum in various bandwidths include mid-band (3.2 GHz to 3.67 GHz), millimetre wave band (24.25 GHz to 28.5 GHz) and in sub-gigahertz band (700 GHz).

TSPs will also be permitted to use their existing spectrum owned by them (800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz and 2500 MHz) for conduct of 5G trials.

The trial period is 6 months, including 2 months for procurement and setting up the equipment.

Each TSP will have to conduct trials in rural and semi-urban settings also in addition to urban settings so that the benefit of 5G technology proliferates across the country and is not confined only to urban areas.

The TSPs are encouraged to conduct trials using 5Gi technology in addition to 5G technology.

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) has approved the 5Gi technology, which was advocated by India too, as it facilitates much larger reach of the 5G towers and radio networks.

The 5Gi technology has been developed by IIT-Madras, Centre of Excellence in Wireless Technology, and IIT- Hyderabad.

The objectives of conducting 5G trials include testing 5G spectrum propagation characteristics, especially in the Indian context; model tuning and evaluation of chosen equipment and vendors; testing of indigenous technology; testing of applications (such as telemedicine, tele-education, augmented/virtual reality, drone-based agricultural monitoring etc); and, to test 5G phones and devices.

DoT has specified that the trials will be isolated and not connected with the existing networks of TSPs. Trials will be on non-commercial basis and the data generated during the trials shall be stored in India.

TSPs are also expected to facilitate testing of indigenously- developed use cases and equipment as part of the trials.

One hundred applications/use cases selected by DoT after conducting the recent Hackathon on 5G applications can also be facilitated in these trials.

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