Jio, Airtel, Vodafone Idea may dial down bids for 5G spectrum at auction
Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel are each estimated to buy a 5G spectrum worth around Rs 53,000 crore in the upcoming mega spectrum auction. Vodafone Idea (Vi) is estimated to buy a 5G spectrum worth Rs 10,500 crore. Analysts are expecting the bidding from the three big telecom companies.
Experts said that Jio and Airtel are likely to primarily target 100 units of premium 5G airwaves in the 3.3-3.67 GHz band, reports Economic Times. 5G technology operates in three frequency bands – lower frequency, mid-band frequency and high frequency. The high-band spectrum has the fastest speed of all three bands.
Meanwhile, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended around 35-40 per cent cut in the reserve price for 5G spectrum for mobile services. TRAI recommended to the government for selling airwaves in all existing bands of 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz, 2300 MHz, 2500 MHz. It suggested a lower price for all bands. Subsequently, the Telecom industry body on Tuesday expressed disappointment on this matter.
The telecom regulator put forward a mega auction plan valued at over Rs 7.5 trillion at the base price allocated over 30 years. Experts estimate the government to dispatch around Rs 1,16,000 crore from the 5G spectrum auction over a 30-year period.
According to experts, Bharti and Jio will selectively bid for 5G spectrum. Telecom operator Airtel has been demonstrating and testing 5G in recent months. It also has a partnership with IT services company Tech Mahindra to build 5G applications. Reportedly, Airtel will launch its 5G services in India after the spectrum auctions are concluded. All three operators are trialling 5G networks.
The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is working on other processes to hold the auction as soon as possible. The 5G auction was delayed earlier because of the challenges brought by the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war.