Bharti Airtel along with Nokia has is about to launch its 5G field trial network in Mumbai’s Phoenix Mall. Located in Lower Parel, this trail network will be the first. Soon enough a similar trial will begin in Kolkata according to sources. Airtel, the Sunil Mittal-led telecom company, will conduct the trial in the 3500 MHz bands. This will be done using 5G gear manufactured by Nokia. Sources suggest that these trials have delivered speeds above 1 Gbps with ultra-low latency.
Airtel was recently allotted a 5G trial spectrum by the Department of Telecommunications (DoT). These spectrums included 3500 MHz, 28 GHz, and 700 MHz bands in cities including Delhi/NCR, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru. This is in consideration intending to utilize next-gen fast wireless broadband technology and develop India-relevant use cases. Jio and Vodafone Idea have also been allotted the same band spectrums by the DoT.
Airtel is India’s first telco to test the 5G network. They achieved this in Hyderabad when they tested a live network using an 1800 MHz band. Airtel is now ready to launch commercial 5G services in India as soon as they get their hands on an adequate spectrum.
Vodafone Idea is India’s 3rd largest telecom operator. They have partnered with Ericsson and started 5G trials in Pune and Gandhinagar. India’s leading telco, Reliance Jio, has also kicked off its 5G trials in Navi Mumbai. There has been a massive surge in data usage amid Covid and both Jio and Airtel want to cater to the masses with the best technology. This means that the allotment of the 5G trial spectrum is hugely valuable to the telcos. Both of them already possess 5G-ready networks and will be looking to future-proof themselves ahead of their respective 5G rollouts.