Ahead of 5G auction, telecom regulatory body conducts readiness tests in Bhopal, Delhi

A day ahead of the 5G spectrum auction, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) commenced pilot testing of 5G networks in four areas with the major telecom service providers like Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, Vodafone ldea and BSNL.

These pilot tests will help make cross sectoral infrastructure more accessible for quick roll out of the 5G networks for telecom firms, post allotment of 5G frequencies.

The TRAI on Monday conducted pilots at Bhopal Smart City, GMR International Airport, New Delhi and Bengaluru metro on the use of street furniture for small cells and aerial fiber deployment.

“Small cells are low-powered radio access nodes or base stations (BS) that have a coverage range from a few meters up to a few hundred meters. The attributes of small cells (radio, antenna) are compressed such that they are portable and easy to deploy. Small cells can play a pivotal role in network upgrade and expansion,” TRAI said in a statement.

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“Considering the lower maintenance cost of small cells, ease of configuration and other benefits that they bring, small cell deployments are likely to grow. The deployment of small cells can thus play a prominent role in the rollout of 5G networks by acting as an economical feasible and sustainable solution to expand network coverage,” it added.

The 5G spectrum auction will begin on Tuesday with four players set to bid for 72 GHz of radio waves worth Rs 4.3 lakh crore on offer. The Union government expects Rs 70,000 crore to Rs 1,00,000 crore from the 5G auctions that would ring in new-age offerings and business models, and enable ultra-high speeds — about 10 times faster than 4G.

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.

The number of days of auction will depend on the actual demand for radio waves and the strategy of individual bidders.

(With agency inputs)

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