DoT to ask broadband operators to expedite service rollout
New Delhi: The Department of Telecom (DoT) is likely to ask broadband wireless access (BWA) operators, which got spectrum two years ago, to speed up deployment of network and also inform the government about the technology they are using for rolling out services.
At present, only Bharti Airtel has launched its BWA services in Kolkata and Bangalore while the remaining players are yet to firm up their plans about the roll-out of services.
"It is proposed to write to all BWA operators for early deployment of network for services and to intimate this ministry about the technology to be used by them," a source in DoT said.
On the BWA spectrum, Long-Term Evolution (LTE) and Wimax technologies can be used to offer services.
Airtel has launched its fourth generation (4G) services based on the TD LTE technology while state-run BSNL, which was alloted BWA spectrum before 2010 is offering Wimax services in some circles.
"At present only Bharti Airtel has launched its BWA services... Other BWA operators have not submitted their deployment network details," the source said.
The operators are required to provide details of the technology proposed to be deployed for operation of their services prior to launch of commercial operations.
In 2010, six companies got BWA spectrum which include Infotel Broadband (which was later bought by Reliance Industries), Bharti Airtel, Tikona Digital Networks, Aircel, Augere Wireless Broadband and Qualcomm.
Only Infotel Broadband had secured pan-India spectrum while Airtel got it for four circles and Qualcomm also for four circles. Airtel has recently bought Qualcomm which has entitled it to spectrum in eight circles including Delhi and Mumbai.
RIL may launch BWA services as early as 2012-end, but there is more likelihood of launch in 2013. Details about rollout plans of other operators are not immediately known.