TELECOM - NEWS & ANALYSIS /

Key telecom players bat for sustainable investments and regulatory improvements ahead of the 5G auctions

Mumbai; 30th August, 2019: India, being one of the fastest growing digital economies is all set to roll out 5G services. As per GSMA, India is set to account for 25% of the total 5G subscribers across the world by 2025.With more than 750 million mobile subscribers and a goal of being a USD 5 trillion economy – 5G will not only be an enabler of growth to the telecom sector in the country but also would propel other sectors to move forward. To discuss the challenges and opportunities that follow, reputed industry leaders met in Mumbai today at the 2nd edition of 5G India Leadership Summit 2019.

The forum comprising of senior leadership teams from leading network operators, network OEMs, Smartphone companies, Academia & Govt. Bodies met to discuss critical factors including cost, quality, technology, investments and regulatory changes needed by the industry to drive sustainable growth in the coming years. The event was supported by reputed institutions such as Mediatek, TATA Tele Business Services, Broadband Forum & Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) and was organized by Konnect Worldwide. More than 100 participants attended the event.

Speaking at the inaugural panel, Anku Jain, Managing Director, MediaTek India, said, “With the world quickly adopting 5G technology India can’t afford to miss the bus as it will pave the way for India to become a truly digital country. 5G will also give a big push to Smart Cities project and 5G will bring the era of inter-connected smart devices at a large scale which would lead to the transformation of machine to machine and IoT technologies for public services. 5G technology is expected to contribute $2.2 trillion to the global economy in the coming 15 years comprising of various sectors.”

Attending the event were eminent panelists including senior leaders from Reliance Jio, OnePlus India, COAI, GSMA, Broadband Forum and Deloitte.

Commenting on the 5G readiness, Vikas Agarwal, General Manager, OnePlus India, said “We’ve been testing 5G since 2016. In fact, we were the first to send a tweet on a 5G network and already have a commercially available 5G device in Europe. We are testing the 5G capabilities in India and are prepared for when India makes the leap into 5G. We are excited about the possibilities that 5G will bring, from cloud gaming to seamless video conferencing, the benefits of 5G are vast.”
Nikhil Shah, Broadband Forum Ambassador, hosted the inaugural panel discussion around 5G readiness in India and steered the participants to key issues in the industry. Spaking at the sidelines of the event, Nikhil said, “We are pleased to take part in the 5G India Leadership Summit which is an important event as India moves to make 5G a reality. Standards have an important role to play in this evolution and during the conference we highlighted how Broadband Forum is accelerating network transformation and cloud evolution through development of an open framework and resources for cloud-based broadband, called Open Broadband. This is a series of initiatives that combine the best of open source with interoperability, standards, and a global network of affiliated labs to support operators wanting to make meaningful change to their networks, while leveraging existing investments and limiting disruption to their customer base.”

Manoj Misra, Senior Public Policy Director, GSMA presented his view on the 5G opportunity in the country. He said, “The GSMA’s vision of ‘Intelligent Connectivity’ highlights how the combination of 5G, artificial intelligence, smart platforms and the Internet of Things can deliver benefits for consumers, enterprises, and society at large. The GSMA forecasts, India will contribute a quarter (24%) of the world’s new mobile subscribers over the period to 2025. With rapid migration to 4G-capable devices and smartphones, by 2025, India will emerge as the world’s 2nd largest smartphone market, with an installed base of almost 1 billion devices. The 4G connections will exceed 75% by 2025, and 5G connections base forecast to reach 88 million by 2025. To achieve the potential of the 5G era, three critical elements are required: substantial investment in digital infrastructure, which should largely come from private sources; a digital environment that inspires trust; and a modernised policy and regulatory framework that enables this.”

Aman Khanna, Founder & Director, Konnect Worldwide, added, “The 2nd edition of 5G India Leadership Summit further cemented our resolve in designing quality platforms to empower industry leaders in terms of interacting, connecting and exchanging ideas – thereby leading to a positive change. This year witnessed participation of 100 plus participants from marquee companies and institutions. We are proud to witness the support to the forum from the community. We will carry this success to the next edition of the Summit – thereby aiming to deliver a bigger and better platform to the top leaders in the 5G landscape in the country”.

Tata Tele Business Services (TTBS) launches ‘SmartOffice solution’ for SMEs in Mumbai

Mumbai: Tata Tele Business Services (TTBS), the leading enabler of connectivity and communication solutions for businesses in India, introduced SmartOffice solution to the SMEs in Mumbai. SmartOffice is an innovative single box solution crafted to meet all Information and Communication Technology (ICT) requirements of businesses. It is a powerful combo that bundles voice, data, storage and applications. SmartOffice is affordable, reliable, easy to deploy, and is a perfect choice for enterprises looking to start a new office. The product was launched at TTBS’ flagship event Do Big Forum in Mumbai, wherein over forty delegates from the SME community had the opportunity to see this new age device/solution for the first time.

For SMEs and Start-ups, it’s a typical challenge managing too many technologies and devices, committing CAPEX and OPEX, and dealing with several vendors and partners. The SmartOffice from TTBS addresses these major concerns, and offers an ICT solution which is robust, future-ready and cost effective. It provides functionality of various devices all-in-one box, such as – IP-PBX, Data Router, Wi-Fi Router, Firewall, and DHCP server, to establish telecom infrastructure of the enterprise. The solution thus eliminates the need for setting up separate voice and data infrastructure including Basic Rate Interfaces, Primary Rate Interfaces and local PSTN gateways, thereby substantially lowering overall ICT costs.

Speaking on the launch of SmartOffice, Mr. Sourabh Sharma, SME Operations Head, Mumbai Region, TTBS, said “TTBS constantly endeavor to design and offer cost effective and innovative ICT solutions to SMEs. We are glad to introduce the SmartOffice solution to the SMEs in Mumbai, which is all-in-one box telecom solutions. We have bundled the box free to ensure that businesses, especially start-ups, don’t have to worry about incurring capex on telecom infrastructure.”

Every month, TTBS organizes Do Big Forums – a customer engagement/education initiative across cities, where industry leaders from across business verticals convene to discuss how digital technologies are being used to deliver compelling products and services, connect faster with customers, and optimize costs. These forums are an engagement platform for customers wherein, on a continual basis, TTBS tries to understand challenges faced by SMEs and provide them with relevant digital solutions.

About Tata Tele Business Services
Tata Tele Business Services (TTBS), belonging to the prestigious Tata Group of companies, is the country’s leading enabler of connectivity and communication solutions for businesses. With services ranging from connectivity, collaboration, cloud, security, IoT and marketing solutions, TTBS offers the largest portfolio of ICT services for businesses in India. Also, with fibre optic network running across 125,000 km., operations in over 60 cities, 1000+ partners and the largest team with 2000+ professionals, TTBS is well geared up to cater to the small, medium & large business community in India. Focus on customer centricity and innovation has helped TTBS garner recognition from customers and peers alike. Some recent accolades include – the CII Award for Customer Obsession, ET Telecom Award for Safety App, World Quality Congress Award for innovation in LOLA (low latency) services, and CMO Asia Award for our thought leadership platform – Do Big Symposium. TTBS strives to always get the best technology and services to businesses so that they can improve processes, reach customers more effectively, manage workforce more efficiently and Do Big.

Airtel Rs. 149 Pack Now Offers 1GB Daily Data With 28-Day Validity to Take on Jio

Airtel has revamped its Rs. 149 recharge pack for prepaid users as it continues its fight against Jio for market share. The Airtel Rs. 149 recharge is said to come with 1GB of data per day alongside other benefits, for a validity period of 28 days. While Jio continues to remain the most affordable telecom operator in India in terms of data consumption, Airtel and the other incumbents have tried to match it, but still don’t quite match its prices and bundled data. Notably, the refreshed Airtel Rs. 149 prepaid plan counters Reliance Jio’s Rs. 149 recharge pack that comes with 1.5GB of daily data.

Telecom Commission sets SUC at 3% of revenue; Jio and Aircel to pay more

NEW DELHI: The Telecom Commission on Monday fixed the weighted average spectrum usage charge (SUC) at a minimum of 3% of revenue, raising the user charge for Reliance Jio Infocomm and Maxis-controlled Aircel, while shooting down the formula proposed by the telecom regulator earlier this month. “The commission has stuck to its previous recommendation but it has introduced one more element, which is maintaining a floor rate for SUC at 3%,” a senior official at the department of telecom (DoT) told ET after the TC’s decision.

Trai asked to submit recommendations on net neutrality; government gears up to finalise policy

NEW DELHI: The government has asked the telecom regulator to submit recommendations on net neutrality, as it gears up to finalise the policy on this controversial issue. “We have received a letter from DoT (telecom department) on making recommendations on net neutrality as whole, and we will shortly float a consultation paper on it,” Trai Chairman RS Sharma told ET. The development comes over a month after Telecom Regulatory Authority of India barred discriminatory pricing of data services, including zero-rated plans such as Facebook’s Free Basics and Airtel Zero, which Sharma said had tackled net neutrality from a tariff perspective.