(Photo: Mint)
(Photo: Mint)

COAI urges DoT to seek Trai's view on 28 GHz band for 5G network

  • During the preparation of the report, discussions were held among all stakeholders after which the department took the step
  • The 28 GHz spectrum band would be within the mid band range

New Delhi: Industry body COAI has exhorted the telecom department to recognise the significance of 28 GHz and 26 GHz spectrum bands for deployment of futuristic 5G services and seek the sector regulator's opinion on its pricing for an early adoption.

Cellular Operators' Association of India (COAI) - the apex body of mobile operators in India - said that globally 28 GHz band is seen as "frontier 5G band" and considered essential, along with 26 GHz, for early 5G deployments.

"It is important to note that many countries like the US, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong etc have already auctioned and deployments have taken place, since existing radio regulations allow countries to allow mobile services in this band," COAI said in a recent letter to the Telecom Secretary.

These nations have not waited for identification of this band for ITU (International Telecommunication Union) but have already made deployments, given the advantages of this band for 5G and concerted global developments of the eco-system in this band.

In Indian context too, the National Digital Communications Policy 2018 has recognised mid band spectrum in the 3 GHz to 43 GHz ranges as central to the country's 5G strategy, and has called for identifying new bands for access and backhaul segments. Doing so would help in timely deployment of 5G networks.

The 28 GHz spectrum band would be within the mid band range, COAI noted.

These bands, it said, were identified for 5G applications in the 5G high level forum committee report. During the preparation of the said report, discussions were held among all stakeholders after which the department and the committee have taken a call to earmark these bands for 5G applications.

"Thus a policy decision in this regard may be taken at the earliest," COAI Director General, Rajan Mathews said.

The association underlined the importance of identifying key spectrum bands for 5G, the next generation of mobile and wireless broadband technology that will not only unleash the full potential of internet of things, industrial applications, advanced logistics and utility networks but also yield economic benefits in areas like healthcare, education, public security and others.

Considering the increasing eco-system in band 28 GHz, it is important for India to identify this band along with 26 GHz for 5G, it said.

"We thus request DoT to kindly recognise the importance of this band for 5G and may send a reference to TRAI for inclusion in its next consultation paper on '5G spectrum identification and pricing'," COAI said.

As such, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has recommended auction of about 8,644 MHz of telecom frequencies, including those for 5G services, at an estimated total base price of 4.9 lakh crore. The telecom regulator recommended pan India base price of 492 crore per megahertz for 5G radiowaves in 3.5 GHz band.

This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.