INDIA: Telecom companies in India launched 5G services in several cities this month as the nation pushes towards its goal of achieving a US$1 trillion digital economy by 2025.
India is the last major Asian economy to launch its 5G network, but telecom companies are promising a rapid rollout with services that will be affordable in a country which already has some of the lowest data prices in the world.
India’s largest telecom player, Reliance Industries’ Jio, on Wednesday (Oct 5) rolled out trial services in New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Varanasi. Its rival Bharti Airtel, the country’s second-biggest operator, started its 5G services in eight cities at existing 4G rates.
5G, the fifth generation of high-speed mobile Internet, touts surfing speeds 10 times that of 4G. With faster downloads and higher bandwidth, the next generation network is seen as essential for adopting emerging technologies.
“5G is much more than the next generation of connectivity technology. It is a foundational technology that unlocks the full potential of other 21st century technologies, like artificial intelligence, Internet of Things, robotics, blockchain, and the metaverse,” said Mr Mukesh Ambani, chairman and managing director of Reliance Industries.
Sectors including education, healthcare, agriculture, and businesses could benefit from 5G as faster technology would improve the reach and efficiency of services to benefit the population, said Mr Ambani.