DoT revises WiMAX policy, voice services to be allowed

28 Aug 2008

The Hindu Business Line is reporting that the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has reversed a previous decision and will permit operators to use WiMAX to offer voice services; initially the regulator had restricted the use of wireless broadband technologies to data services. The decision was made following requests and feedback from the WiMAX forum and industry associations including the Association of Unified Telecom Service Providers of India (AUSPI). The DoT has however confirmed that its decision will affect the reserve price for the upcoming WiMAX auction. Originally WiMAX spectrum pricing was set at 25% of the 3G auction’s base price but the Telecom Commission has ruled that, with the possibility of voice services being offered, this should now increase to 50%. Under the new pricing structure a pan-India WiMAX licence will cost an estimated INR10.1 billion (USD230.5 million).