BSNL 4G by March 2016:
State run Bharat sanchar nigam Ltd. the largest PSU has declared that it will launch its 4G services in 14 circles where it holds spectrum in band 41 by the end of current financial year ie. by March 2016.
BSNL is already losing its customers through MNP, Bharti Airtel has already launched 4G operations across India while Reliance Jio and Vodafone have declared their services will go live by December
We will launch competitive tariff plans to match Reliance Jio and other private telecom service providers’ pricing, be it 4G or 3G, by the end of this year,” BSNL chairman-cum-managing director Anupam Shrivastava told Economic times.
BSNL holds 20MHz of spectrum in 2500MHz band (Band 41) in 14 circles after it surrendered its BWA spectrum in 6 circles for a refund (some of which were in band 7 while the remaining were in band 41). BSNL plans to launch operations on this band and price its services in the same range as Reliance jio, the latter holds spectrum in three frequency bands 2300MHz (Band 40) 1800 MHz (Band 3) and 850MHz (Band 5).
Shrivastava further said, “We are taking Wi-Fi route for our 4G services and also talking to telecom operators for spectrum sharing.” Wi-Fi technology connects through 2G or 3G network and acts as a 4G hotspot to delivers high-speed data services to consumers.
BSNL says it has plans of sharing spectrum with Reliance Jio but it is unclear how it plans on doing that since the 4G spectrum held by both operators are in different bands and the cabinet has only approved the sharing of spectrum in the same band and disapproved spectrum leasing of any kind. The state-run operator is also evaluating device-bundling options for 4G services and is currently in talks with various device manufacturers for consumer-friendly schemes.
“We compete with each other and share infrastructure with Reliance Jio as well. In today’s scenario, it should not be seen as a competition as the objective is to serve consumers,” Shrivastava said.