- Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnav said India is expected to launch its 6G network infrastructure by 2029.
- According to him, India had the fastest rollout of 5G telecom services in the world.
- A report said that approximately 30-35 per cent of the 150-170 million smartphones sold in India are 5G capable.
At an event hosted by the PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry this week, Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said that India had the fastest rollout of 5G telecom services in the world since they started in October of last year. By 2029, the country is also expected to launch its 6G network infrastructure.
Ashwini Vaishnaw on 5G, 6G in India
Vaishnaw, who currently holds the department of Railways, Communications, Electronics and IT, stated that the objective was to serve 200 cities by December 2023, but 5G services have already been introduced in 397 cities, says a Deccan Herald report. To recall, Prime Minister Narendra Modi formally inaugurated 5G services on October 1st, 2022, after India’s 5G spectrum auctions concluded in August 2022.
The minister also stated that the government intends to develop the 6G network infrastructure by 2029 and that India is poised to lead the world in 6G technology. He did not, however, provide much information on the matter.
5G in India
Currently, only two of the three largest telecom carriers in India are offering 5G services to their customers. The non-standalone access (NSA) technology was initially applied in a commercial setting by Airtel, which was the first service provider to do so. On the other hand, Jio is the only Indian operator that uses the 700 MHz bands, and it is also the only one that has decided to deploy 5G standalone access (SA) (5G low-band spectrum).
Citing rating agency CRISIL, the report mentioned that by March 2025, about a third of wireless data users in the country, or around 300 million customers, are expected to use 5G services, up from 20-25 million in March 2023.
As per Naveen Vaidyanathan, Director, CRISIL Ratings, approximately 30-35 per cent of the 150-170 million smartphones sold in India are 5G capable. While the share of 5G smartphone shipments will progressively increase, the limited initial value proposition and high cost of the device compared to a 4G phone will limit overall 5G adoption to 300 million users by fiscal 2025.