NEW DELHI: The DoT informed the parliamentary committee on IT that 5G trials are likely to be started in 2-3 months. It has already received 16 applications for 5G field trials using imported as well as indigenous technology.

The panel in its report said, “notwithstanding the submission of TSPs, and the industry body, it is really disturbing to note that 5G trials have not yet been permitted.”

“This is in complete contradiction to what the Department had informed the Committee during examination of Demands for Grants (2020-21) in the month of February, 2020 that the Government has allowed all applications for 5G trials in limited area and for limited time to test potential 5G India specific use cases,” the panel said in its report.

It asked why spectrum for 5G trial has still not been allowed when the
DoT has categorically stated that there are no major issues confronting trials in the country.

“Considering that TSPs have submitted their applications for 5G trials in the month of January, 2020, the Committee would like to know the reasons for the delay in issuing spectrum for 5G trials to TSPs.”

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The Committee said that 5G trials are an essential prerequisite for building the 5G ecosystem and the DoT needs to take the issues of experimental spectrum and early conduct of 5G trials more seriously.

“Any further delay will only have an adverse impact on building an ecosystem for
5G in the country and will further delay the launching of 5G services.”

India’s telecom department is working with different ministries and departments for setting up of India specific 5G use case labs in areas like education, health care, agriculture, public safety and FinTech.

It also informed that Institute of Development and Research in Banking Technology (IDRBT), an Institute under RBI, in collaboration with Department of Financial Services has come forward for setting up a 5G Use case lab in Banking & Financial Services and Insurance (BFSI).

“DoT has approved this proposal for setting up a 5G use Case lab in the Financial Sector at IDRBT with investment of Rs 22.1 crore with Rs 17.5
crore funding by DoT,” a report on India’s 5G preparedness by the parliamentary committee on IT revealed.

The DoT also informed the panel that it is presently working with Food Safety and Standard Authority of India for setting up use case lab in food safety certification and with Ministry of Health, AIIMS, Ministry of Housing and Urban Development for setting up of Use cases in respective domains.

The report revealed that the Indian government is planning to allow 5G trials in limited area and for limited time to test potential 5G India specific Use cases based on enhanced Mobile Broadband(eMBB), Massive Machine Type Communications (mMTC) and Ultra Reliable Low Latency Communications (uRLLC) in isolation on non-commercial basis subject to strict safeguards.

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