Airtel has reportedly become the first Indian company to successfully demonstrate the 5G network in the country. Airtel conducted the demonstration in Hyderabad earlier today. The company has stated that it operated 5G and 4G concurrently over the existing liberalized spectrum in the 1800MHz band through the Non-Standalone (NSA) network technology. The speeds expected through this technology is expected to be 10 times more than the existing infrastructure.
Airtel has collaborated with Ericsson to bring the infrastructure in the country. The telecom giants have also said it has the capability to successfully operate a 5G network over the existing technology-neutral spectrum over the bands between 1800MHz, 2100MHz, and 2300MHz frequency along with sub-GHz bands that are available at 800MHz and 900MHz.
I am very proud of our engineers who have worked tirelessly to showcase this incredible capability in Tech City, Hyderabad today. Every one of our investments is future proofed as this game changing test in Hyderabad proves. With Airtel being the first operator to demonstrate this capability, we have shown again that we have always been the first in India to pioneer new technologies in our quest for empowering Indians everywhere.
We believe India has the potential to become a global hub for 5G innovation. To make that happen we need the ecosystem to come together – applications, devices and network innovation. We are more than ready to do our bit.
Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO, Bharti Airtel
Although, for commercial operations, Airtel will have to be permitted by the Department of Telecom (DoT) to operate 5G and 4G networks dynamically over the same spectrum bands. Airtel has not provided any specific timeline on the commercial rollout of its 5G network in the country.
Airtel also claimed it made use of a sub-6GHz NSA (non-standalone) network operating on the 1,800MHz band for the 5G test. It further said that the infrastructure is ready from their end and “within a matter of months” it is ready to roll out 5G services across the country.
During the tests, Airtel made use of OPPO Reno 5 Pro and OPPO Find X2 Pro smartphones. The telecom giants also managed to touch speeds of up to 3Gbps. At these speeds, a user can download a complete 2 hour movie in just few seconds. This puts Airtel better the top speeds of Reliance Jio in the Jio Giga Fiber where Jio could manage top speeds of 1Gbps. However, Jio is also said to launch its 5G services in the country by mid-2021.
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