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3G Services not before 2011, Operators mull 4G

3G auction dates have been announced and is scheduled for January, 2010 (as of now). The spectrum will be allotted to winners by August 2010 and the January auction will cater to four slots (via).

As we mentioned earlier, the decision (which results in a loss of Rs. 5K crores.) to restrict the auction is the result of reluctance from Ministry of Defence to vacate the designated spectrum (air waves) for commercial use.

Essentially, operators will be able to launch the service only by 2011 and few operators might just wait for 4G and take a bet there (see Motorola’s 4G ambition).

Even if the Government allocates 3G spectrum by August 2010, operators will not be in a position to launch the services before early 2011. By that time 4G technologies such as Long-Term Evolution (LTE) will be commercially available for operators to deploy. Since even 3G players will ultimately move to LTE, we are looking at moving straight to 4G technology in a year’s time” – source

Given that there are 12 operators fighting for 4 slots (and lackluster reply from foreign bidders), expect bold steps from some of the newcomers who are shaking up the industry.

What’s your take on India’s 3G saga?Is it even worth talking, unless we some real action? How many of you are using 3G services from government owned BSNL and MTNL?

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