ITU spectrum meet resolves 5G, satellite industry concerns: ITU-APT Foundation of India

By: |
November 29, 2019 10:54 PM

The telecom and satellite were at loggerheads with each other over demand for spectrum at the ITU WRC meet.

ITU spectrum, 5G, satellite industry, APT Foundation of India, satellite services, 5G technologiesThe telecom and satellite were at loggerheads with each other over demand for spectrum at the ITU WRC meet.

The international resolution approved by UN body International Telecommunication Union at its global meet has resolved concerns raised by the telecom sector on 5G and has put everyone across the globe at par for the roll-out of the next-generation technology, ITU-APT Foundation of India said on Friday.

After about a month-long deliberation with representatives from 193 countries at Sharm El-Sheikh in Egypt, ITU in its World Radio Conference 2019 have struck a balance between deployment of 5G and satellite services which will now be followed across the globe, ITU-APT Foundation of India President Bharat Bhatia told reporters here.

“Proposal of India around radiation power levels from base station of 5G was close to the resolution approved by the ITU. Now, base stations (base transceiver station) that will be deployed across the world can also be deployed in India for 5G. The cost of deployment of 5G BTS in India will be at par with the rest of the world,” Bhatia said. The telecom and satellite were at loggerheads with each other over demand for spectrum at the ITU WRC meet.

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Satellite bodies wanted the restricted use of 5G technologies in the spectrum bands where they operate while telecom bodies argued that limitation being pushed by the satellite bodies will make it impossible for them to provide 5G services.

According to satellite organisations, weather satellites will not be able to catch reflections from the earth that are used to analyse various factors, including water vapour content, to predict weather if 5G base stations emit signals at high power. The telecom bodies argued that the satellite companies are demanding more bandwidth than required for their operations.

Russia, China, Europe and India favoured stringent norms of 5G services but later, Russia agreed for usage of 5G in spectrum bands where satellites are being used. As part of the resolution, the ITU has identified large chunk of spectrum for 5G in higher frequency bands which include ranges of 24.25-27.54 Ghz, 37-43.5 Ghz, 47.2-48.2 Ghz and 66-71 Ghz.

Currently, India has only identified 275 megahertz of radiowaves frequency between 3300-3400 Mhz and 3425-3600 Mhz bands for the 5G auction. A telecom player interested in buying spectrum for 5G service in 3300-3400 Mhz and 3425-3600 Mhz bands will need to shell out at least Rs 9,840 crore as per the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s proposal.

The government has not yet sought reference of Trai on higher frequency range such as 26 GHz band for the 5G services. According to ITU, a 5G application in general should be able to transmit data with 10 gigabit per second speed and in some cases 20 gigabit per second.

Industry experts have said the lower data speed case requires around 320 Mhz of spectrum, while higher data speed needs around 670 Mhz. The ITU has also identified use of 40 Ghz band frequency for use of high altitude platform system like installing hot air balloon type structure for transmitting telecom signal at an altitude of 20 kilometers, Bhatia said.

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