Telcos want clarity on 5G
While the government is getting ready to conduct the next round of spectrum auction from March 1, telecom firms have sought clarity if 5G can be launched on the airwaves bought through this sale. What led to this move is that while spectrum assigned through auction is technology-neutral as also the unified licence, the notice inviting application (NIA) issued by Department of Telecommunications (DoT) omitted 5G. It has also said that operators wanting to use new technology have to seek prior clearance.
The NIA states that spectrum blocks in the liberalised spectrum or acquired through auctions may be combined if required by technology. It clarifies that there are no restrictions on the technology to be deployed for providing services within the scope of the service licence, provided it is compatible with technologies already deployed in the licensed service area (LSA). “In case of switching over to a different technology (other than GSM/ WCDMA/ LTE/ CDMA), while rolling out the networks for compliance of roll out obligations, information regarding the new technology should be given at least one year before any new technology base station site is offered for testing,” it said.