Government 3G spectrum decision by March

2 Dec 2005

The Indian government will decide on a strategy for allocation and pricing of 3G mobile spectrum by March 2006, telecoms minister Dayanidhi Maran announced yesterday. The new deadline is expected to intensify lobbying from CDMA and GSM players, as both want the government to adopt specific spectrum standards to suit their needs. Regulator the TRAI released a new set of spectrum policy recommendations in May 2005 dealing with issues including the allocation of 3G spectrum. Its recommendations included rejecting earlier proposals by CDMA operators to use the US PCS standard 1900MHz band, and instead awarding spectrum in the IMT-2000 2GHz band (requested by GSM-based cellcos) by the end of 2006. The TRAI’s proposed usage of the 2GHz frequency band, for both GSM and CDMA networks, is designed to support both W-CDMA and CDMA2000 1xEV-DO 3G development.