Having issued a pre-consultation paper on IMT-Advanced mobile broadband services in February 2010, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has now published a consultation paper on the potential licensing of such services. Key issues raised in the latest consultation paper include: suitable spectrum bands; the size of spectrum blocks to be auctioned; maximum spectrum permitted to each bidder; eligibility criteria for bidding; rollout obligations; spectrum usage charges; and security issues. Comments on the proposals must be submitted by 20 September 2011.
Announcing the release of the paper, the regulator noted: ‘As the wireless industry is witnessing explosive growth in the demand for both voice and data services, the number of mobile telephone subscribers, as well as usage rates, have also grown considerably. The bandwidth intensive services and the rising number of users are placing increasing demands on mobile networks. As third generation (3G) systems are being deployed in India, many operators in the developed countries are focusing on deploying further advanced system networks, called IMT-Advanced, to cater to the growing requirement of data, speed and content delivery … These systems will facilitate higher bandwidth, higher data rate, lower authentication load, and will support higher level of user-level customisation.’