The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) recently announced that it will start accepting applications from companies interested in the 5G spectrum auction from July 1 to July 8. Now, Union Telecom and IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw has confirmed that the 5G launch will happen after the spectrum auctions are concluded. He says that 5G will be rolled out in August or September this year.
At a technology event in Paris, Vaishnaw said, “5G spectrum auction process has started today. We should see the auction process completed by end of July, which is what our scheduled target date was. Telecom companies are already working in parallel to set up the entire infrastructure.”
The telecom minister added, “Auction is in time. July was the timeframe for the auction. August-September was the timeframe to begin rollout.” Back in March, it was reported that 5G rollout in India could commence from August. However, India’s 5G plans hit a roadblock as telcos and private companies fought over the direct allocation of 5G bands. Later, the issue was resolved and the 5G spectrum auction is now scheduled for July 2022.
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A total of 72097.85 MHz of spectrum will be auctioned by July-end. The validity of the spectrum is 20 years. Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio are touted to bid for the 5G spectrum, while Vodafone Idea may not be in a position to bid. The telcos have already commenced 5G trials in various parts of the country. Commercial 5G services are set to arrive in the following regions in India—Mumbai, Bengaluru, Kolkata, Pune, Hyderabad, Delhi, Gurugram, Ahmadabad, Chennai, Chandigarh, Lucknow, Jamnagar, and Gandhi Nagar.