MTNL set for India’s first commercial 3G launch

5 Feb 2009

Despite ongoing delays in the auction process for 3G spectrum in India, Mahanagar Nigam Telecom Ltd (MTNL) looks set to become the first operator to launch UMTS services commercially, the Economic Times reports. The state-owned telco has announced that it will launch its next generation services, offered under the Jadoo brand, on 5 February in central Delhi, including the Connaught Place, India Gate, Pragati Madan, Delhi Gate and Minto Road areas. US-based Motorola has been contracted to roll out the new core network. The launch comes after MTNL was allocated 3G spectrum at the end of 2008, giving it a head start over other operators, which are still waiting for the government to finalise 3G policy. Fellow state-run operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd is the only other company that has been given frequencies for 3G services, and is expected to launch commercially in the near future.