5G: ‘mmWave’ spectrum can trigger USD 150 bn in additional GDP for India, says report

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October 28, 2020 10:31 PM

India will benefit significantly from mmWave-enabled 5G, said the latest report by global telecom industry body GSMA.

5G networks need a mix of spectrum across low (sub-1 GHz), mid (for instance 3.5 GHz) and high (mmWave or millimeterWave) bands. (File image)

The ‘mmWave’ enabled 5G can potentially deliver USD 150 billion in additional GDP for India over the period 2025-2040, as spectrum in this hi-frequency band will play a crucial role in enabling speedy and ultra-low-latency features required for futuristic applications, a report by GSMA said on Wednesday.

5G networks need a mix of spectrum across low (sub-1 GHz), mid (for instance 3.5 GHz) and high (mmWave or millimeterWave) bands.

India will benefit significantly from mmWave-enabled 5G, said the latest report by global telecom industry body GSMA.

The report was unveiled at a virtual event organised by Cellular Operators’ Association of India (COAI), Global mobile Suppliers Association (GSA) and GSMA.

“mmWave spectrum in particular will play a crucial role in enabling the high-speed and ultra-low-latency features required by many 5G applications…Over the period 2025-2040, we estimate that mmWave-enabled 5G will deliver USD 150 billion in additional GDP for India,” the report said.

Speaking at the event, K Ramchand, Member (Technology), DoT, said that the department is initiating talks with Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on the issue of utilising 24.25 to 27.5 GHz bands for 5G technologies.

“…so we are going to discuss with ISRO shortly…maintaining distance of 2.7 km from these five stations in India, rest of the country can use this band for 5G technologies. And probably we will be requesting them not to add any more stations in this band, so it is available for International Mobile Telecommunications…,” Ramchand said referring to spectrum in 24.25 to 27.5 GHz band.

The band is particularly relevance for high capacity, high density application, for fixed wireless applications, access application and 5G, the senior Department of Telecom (DoT) official said.

The scope of 5G is much more than connecting people, and would be leveraged extensively for machine-to-machine communications, Ramchand said.

“DoT has already released policy for allotting 13 digits for machine-to-machine communication, they are going to come with some more guidelines for massive machine-to-machine communications,” he said, adding that guidelines are being worked out alongwith other ministries.

Meanwhile, the GSMA report titled ‘The Impacts of mmWave 5G in India’ said that manufacturing sector will benefit the most from 5G applications.

“The healthcare sector will also benefit greatly from mmWave-enabled 5G, with an impact of approximately USD 4 billion,” said the report.

5G networks offer the potential to transform industrial sectors and deliver significant social and economic benefits in India, it observed.

“Over the period 2023-2040, we forecast that 5G technologies will make an overall contribution of approximately USD 450 billion to the Indian economy (0.6 per cent of GDP by 2040),” the GSMA report said.

India stands to benefit significantly from mmWave-enabled 5G using bands such as 26 GHz and 28 GHz, a COAI statement said.

The event also saw launch of GSA’s paper titled ‘Technical Report mmWave bands for 5G – India’.

“Early availability of mmWave spectrum for 5G in India will also drive much-needed investments in this sector, as this spectrum will be extremely useful for driving the Digital India programme being an enabler across sectors of the economy including Industrial Internet of Things (huge capacity and new services).

“We are confident that these reports will help the Government in its understanding in making mmWave available in a timely manner for deployment of 5G networks and services,” said S P Kochhar, Director General at COAI said in his opening remarks at the event.

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