Vodafone-Idea’s New Plan To Take On Reliance Jio; Tap To Read

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Bharti Airtel has moved its loyal customers on its second-and third-generation networks in 10 circles to the fourth generation.

The rival telco Vodafone, on the other hand, has redeployed its legacy airwaves in Mumbai for 4G services. With this smart move, Vodafone wants to chase quality mobile broadband customers to take on fast-expanding Reliance Jio.

Sunil Mittal-led Airtel holds 900 Mhz airwaves in six more circles, namely in Assam, Bihar, J&K, Orissa, UP-East and West Bengal. These were allocated at government-determined prices. An expert in spectrum regulatory affairs said it would need to pay the market price to redeploy these airwaves.

Meanwhile, the company has set in motion plans to deploy its 2100 Mhz band for 4G. It had received this 3G spectrum through auctions. For Vodafone Idea, the progress on spectrum refarming outside Mumbai is taking time as its old legacy network equipment does not support 4G LTE services on the 900 Mhz band. The company, India’s telecom market leader, recently gave contracts to replace the equipment.

Airtel’s chief technology officer, Randeep Sekhon, told in his official statement that the company has apparently deployed 4G in the 900 Mhz band in 10 circles”, which would help it “significantly step up user experience with improved indoor coverage and also complement its massive 4G capacity in the 2300 Mhz and 1800 Mhz bands”. Airtel, India’s second largest telecom operator, expects such refarming of airwaves to boost its 4G network capacity at virtually zero incremental costs.

Vodafone Idea, in turn, is deploying dynamic spectrum refarming that enables dynamic allocation of spectrum to the service as per demand, along with the massive-MIMO technology to achieve rapid expansion in its countrywide 4G coverage and data capacity to the service as per demand. Vodafone Idea, though, declined to share details of its actual progress on the refarming of 900 Mhz and 2100 Mhz band airwaves for 4G services.



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