Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel are aggressively expanding the reach of their 5G connectivity in India. At a time when the two telecom giants are working on providing 5G services to their customers across the country, state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) is working on deploying its 4G services in different parts of the country. The company recently launched a pilot program to deploy its 4G services in parts of Punjab and has already deployed 135 out of 200 telecom towers in the state. The installation of the remaining towers is likely to be completed soon.
After the deployment is complete, the state-run telecom operator will test its telecom stack for a period of three months as a part of the pilot plan, before starting large-scale deployment in different parts of the country.
Along with this development, Minister of Railways, Communications and Electronics & Information Technology (IT), Ashwini Vaishnav has said that once the pilot program is successful, the company will install 200 towers a day to increase 4G deployment in the country.
“We have already started deploying 200 towers based on India’s telecom stack, while around 135 sites have already been completed… We will conduct trials for the next three months and deploy 200 towers per day,” the minister said. Will raise the towers. Said In a statement to The Economic Times Telecom.
He also said that the rapid roll out of 4G telecom sites has already been planned for August. This means that if the pilot programme, which the minister says involves real customers in a physical environment, goes well, BSNL will eventually start rolling out its 4G services in India.
Apart from talking about 4G services, Vaishnav also talked about BSNL’s plans to launch 5G services. He told the publication that the 4G equipment deployed by BSNL will be used to provide 5G services. The company will release a software update that will upgrade its 4G stack to offer 5G services.
That said, the Department of Telecom (DoT) is yet to get approval from the Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM) for the deployment of one lakh 4G towers by the state-run telco. This approval is necessary for the company to issue a purchase order to Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) which has developed the indigenous 4G stack for the company.
Significantly, in November 2022, TCS and ITI Limited submitted their bids for setting up one lakh 4G telecom towers in four zones of the country. The board of BSNL had recommended TCS for this purpose in February this year.
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