From October 1, 2022, India got the fifth generation network service with Prime Minister Narendra Modi launching the 5G services. The 5G network is expected to unleash new economic opportunities and societal benefits giving it the potential for being a transformational force for Indian society.
Launching 5G network service, Modi said that 5G technology will revolutionise the telecom sector. In a Tweet, the prime minister wrote, “Historic day for 21st century India! 5G technology will revolutionise the telecom sector.”
The 5G services will be rolled out in a phased manner. The 13 cities where 5G networks will be launched first include Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chandigarh, Chennai, Delhi, Gandhinagar, Gurugram, Hyderabad, Jamnagar, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai and Pune.
Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani said that Reliance Jio’s 5G services will be available pan India by December 2023. “India may have started late, but will finish first…will have the best quality and most affordable 5G services,” he said.
Bharti Airtel CEO Sunil Mittal says said that they would roll out of 5G from October 1 and offer pan India 5G services by March 2024.
The Ministry of Communications said that 5G can unleash new economic opportunities and societal benefits giving it the potential for being a transformational force for Indian society. The cumulative economic impact of 5G on India is expected to reach $450 billion by 2035. For consumers, 5G could have benefits owing to the superior Internet speed and low latency it promises over 4G. At its peak, internet speeds on 5G could touch 10 Gbps, compared to the 100 Mbps peak of 4G. Similarly, latency under 4G is between 10-100 ms (millisecond) whereas on 5G it is expected to be under 1 ms. Latency is the time it takes for a device to send packets of data and get a response. Shorter the latency, quicker the response.
It will help the country leapfrog the traditional barriers to development, spur innovations by startups and business enterprises as well as advance the ‘Digital India’ vision.
5G; LEADING THE WAY
DoT has set up a 5G Testbed with help of IITs, IISc Bengaluru and SAMEER to develop technology in 2018. A 5G Hackathon was commenced in 2020, to trigger ideation and prototyping of use-cases by startups and has led to spurring innovative products. An inter-ministerial committee on 5G use-cases has been functioning since 2021 in coordination with 12 Central Ministries, enabling setting up of 5G use-case labs. Consultations with Industry have been held enabling the 5G ecosystem to make 5G handsets available. A roundtable was held in Mumbai with Investors, Bankers and Industry on 5G Business opportunities and to identify key interventions by the Government.