Have you heard the news about India to get 5G in 2022? Yes, 5G services are expected to launch in many cities and metros in India in 2022 as per the announcement made by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). In one of their statements, DoT had revealed that 5G technology is likely to deliver 10 times better download speeds as compared to 4G and about 3 times greater spectrum efficiency. In their latest statement, DoT also said that various 5G trials have already been established in different cities by Vodafone Idea, Airtel, and Jio.
About 5G Services
After 1G, 2G, 3G, and 4G networks, 5G or 5th generation mobile networks have emerged as a new global wireless standard. 5G supports an advanced network that is intended to connect practically everyone and everything like different devices, machineries, objects, etc. The key motive behind rolling out 5G wireless technology is to offer:
- Greater multi-Gbps peak data speeds
- Ultra-low latency
- Better reliability
- Massive network capacity
- Increased network availability
- Enhanced user experience
- Uniform user experience to more users
- Improved performance and efficiency
About 5G Test Bed project
The 5G Test Bed project funded by the DoT will allow Indian academia and industry to validate their products, algorithms, and prototypes, and demonstrate different services. The project, costing around Rs 224 crore, is opening the gates for end-to-end testing of 5G User Equipment (UEs) and network equipment by 5G investors such as startups, Small and Medium Sized Enterprises (SMEs), academia, and other industries in the country.
The DoT has united with 8 agencies for the 5G Test Bed project that commenced in 2018 and is set to be completed by December 31, 2021. These industries include:
- Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay
- IIT Kanpur
- IIT Hyderabad
- IIT Delhi
- IIT Madras
- Center of Excellence in Wireless Technology (CEWiT), and
- Indian Institute of Science (IISC) Bangalore
- Society for Applied Microwave Electronics Engineering & Research (SAMEER)
Places that are expected to receive 5G services first
Excited to know which cities in India are going to get the 5G services first? Here is the list of cities where 5G wireless technology services are expected to roll out first:
- Pune, and
- Gandhi Nagar
In all these 13 locations, telecom operators have established 5G trial sites. However, no exact launch timeline has been decided for these services. Moreover, which telecom operator will be the first to introduce its 5G services commercially, has also not yet been confirmed by the government.
All the major private telecom companies have already conducted trials in 13 cities. The DoT had permitted 6 months’ trials to companies with telecom equipment makers Nokia, Samsung, Ericsson, and C-DOT. Presently, all the major private players are offering 4G services throughout the country and are gearing up for 5G services.
Auction of 5G spectrum
In September 2021, a recommendation had been sent to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRIA) by DoT for the auction of spectrum acknowledged for International Mobile Telecommunications (IMT)/ 5G concerning band plan, reserve price, block size, and quantum of spectrum.
To meet the spectrum requirements of captive 5G applications of the industry, the conditions of auctions were set in 526-698 MHZ,700 MHZ, 800 MHZ, 900 MHZ, 1800 MHZ, 2100 MHZ, 2300 MHZ, 2500 MHZ, 3300-3670 MHZ, and 24.25-28.5 GHz bands for 5G public as well as private 5G networks.
5G by Jio, Airtel, and Vodafone Idea
Here is the status of some major telecom players with regards to 5G technology in India:
Jio is a well-renowned telecom company in India that announced the rollout of 5G network in the second half of 2021. However, it didn’t happen due to some reason. In June 2021, it has been revealed that Jio has been uniquely positioned to upgrade to a 5G network swiftly and seamlessly.
For the development of the 5G network system, the company has been working with global partners to develop a range of 5G devices. Jio has also claimed to have recorded the highest speed of 1 Gbps during its trials.
Bharti Airtel (Airtel) is India’s leading communications solutions provider. In 2021 that company announced the successful completion of India’s foremost 5G trial in the 700 MHz band in partnership with Nokia. Since the company has been assigned for the test spectrum in multiple bands by the government’s Department of Telecommunications, it conducted the test spectrum on the outskirts of Kolkata for the endorsement of 5G technology and use cases. With a 700 MHz band, Airtel and Nokia were able to attain high-speed wireless broadband network coverage of 40 Km between two 3GPP usual 5G sites.
Airtel also disclosed that they will deploy Intel’s latest 3rd gen Xeon Scalable processors, FPGAs, and eASICs. Besides, they will also use Ethernet 800 successions across its network to form a firm foundation for wide-scale 5G. In July 2021, the company again tested 5G in Mumbai using equipment provided by Nokia. This time, the trial was conducted in the 3500 MHz band. The test resulted in higher speeds of over 1 Gbps with ultra-low latency.
As a member of the Open Radio Access Network (O-RAN) Alliance, Airtel and Intel will work together to develop an array of Make in India 5G solutions. The partnership is expected to produce world-class telecom infrastructure in India through local partners.
VI or Vodafone Idea Limited is another popular Indian telecom operator that has partnered with both Ericsson and Nokia in the past to showcase its 5G technology. With the help of Nokia’s solution, the company has successfully delivered 5G connectivity across an area covering 17.1 km while providing more than 100Mbps during the trials.
The 5G trial by VI, along with Nokia has been initiated to support the Indian Government’s Digital India vision of introducing consistent and high-speed connectivity in rural areas. Nokia’s AirScale radio portfolio and Microwave E-band have been used by VI for the trial.
No doubt, we all are excited about India to get 5G in 2022 that will allow us to enjoy a higher internet speed. Along with higher speed, we will gain more advantages like low latency, increased capacity, more bandwidth, powering innovation, less tower congestion, etc.