India: 160 MHz of spectrum for BWA services in 2012

in Blog, BWA, India, LTE, WiMAX

The government of India is planning to make 160 MHz of spectrum available next year for telecom operators for deploying broadband wireless access (BWA) services across the country.

To encourage private sector participation in government efforts, last year India had conducted a very successful auction of the 3G and BWA spectrum. It is expected that a total of 160 MHz spectrum would now be available for BWA use by the next year, said Telecom Minister Kapil Sibal at the opening session of the World Summit of the Information Society (WSIS) in Geneva.

Operators would be free to choose any technology for deployment of high speed Internet services. It would be up to service providers to choose the best technology (LTE or WiMAX) suited to them, taking into consideration many aspects such as availability of equipment, efficient use of spectrum and seamless roaming.

Last year, the India government had auctioned 40 Mhz of spectrum, which included two blocks of 20 Mhz, for providing BWA service in the country. State-run telecom companies MTNL and BSNL were alloted 20 Mhz of spectrum in circles where they run services. These companies had to match the prices paid by the winner of BWA spectrum auction.

The combined revenues for the government from the 3G auction last year and the sale of broadband wireless access (BWA) spectrum was Rs 1.06 lakh crore. The government expected to get Rs 35,000 crore.

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