New Delhi: A body representing firms offering wireless broadband connectivity has hit out at the government alleging discrepancies in the spectrum auction policy for Broadband Wireless players and 3G operators and demanded a level-playing field.
Pointing out that there is “unjustified” anomalies in the 3G and BWA in information memo released by the Department of Telecom, WiMax Forum (India) Chairman CS Rao said, “We want a level-playing field between the 3G and the Broadband Wireless Access players.”
3G and BWA are platforms for providing high-speed internet on mobile, enabling video calls, movie downloads and other multimedia applications on mobiles.
Rao said there are inconsistencies between the auction policies for both the services released by the DoT.
“While the right to use spectrum allotted in 2.1 GHZ band would be valid for 20 years, for the BWA the right to use the spectrum allotted in the 2.3 GHz and 2.5 GHz bands would be valid for 15 years,” he pointed out and added that for the latter also, it should be extended to 20 years.
Rao further said the roll-out obligations for the BWA are more stringent. For 3G spectrum, the licensee would have to ensure that at least 50 per cent of the district headquarters in the service area would be covered, out of which at least 15 per cent should be in rural areas within five years of the effective date of commissioning the services.
For BWA, however, the licensee would have to see that at least 50 per cent of the rural areas are covered within five years of the effective date, he said.