Airtel has started testing its own Airtel 5G networks in Hyderabad. Airtel is working on mid-bands and sub-GHz bands. Airtel is one of the first companies to roll out 5G services in the country.
Airtel has just announced that it has successfully demonstrated its Airtel 5G networks in Hyderabad. Airtel is taking on Jio in terms of operational success in 5G networks. Jio had earlier announced its launch of 5G services in 2021.
Airtel states that it has successfully orchestrated operations of Airtel 5G and 4G networks concurrently. This is broadcast over a liberalized spectrum in the 1800 MHz band through the Non-Standalone network technology. The company says that their 5G network is capable of delivering up to 10x speeds. Compared to existing technologies, it allows users to download a movie in a couple of seconds on a 5G phone.
Currently, Airtel is using Ericsson 4G (DSS) as its equipment partner to deliver its 4G and 5G networks. Existing technology-neutral spectrums in mid-bands (1800/2100/2300 MHz) and sub-GHz bands (800/900 MHz) help in this regard. The technology allows Airtel to operate the 4G and 5G networks dynamically over the same spectrum block. The company states that it can deploy 5G networks easily through means of a simple software upgrade. There is no need to go through tedious hardware and network structure remodeling. Basically, with no major increase in operational costs, it allows Airtel to roll out its 5G services.
Airtel stated that once they get the government approval and the right spectrum bands available in sufficient quantity, they will be able to roll out the 5G network in the country in a matter of months. Airtel did not provide any specific timeline for the commercial rollout of the 5G network in the country.
"The moment we receive government approvals, and we have the right spectrum bands and in adequate amounts, we'll be able to roll this [5G] out immediately," said Gopal Vittal, MD, and CEO, Bharti Airtel, during a virtual media briefing.
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