Airtel and Huawei test 5G; Nokia to modernise BSNL network

26 Feb 2018

Indian mobile market leader Bharti Airtel has successfully trialled 5G technology in India in partnership with Chinese vendor Huawei, the Economic Times reports. The trial used a 5G RAN operating in the 3500MHz band, 5G core and 50GE Network Slicing router and took place at the cellco’s network experience centre in Manesar, Gurgaon. The test achieved throughput of 3Gbps, and end-to-end latency of approximately 1ms. Airtel’s director of networks Abhay Savargaonkar described the trial as a ‘small but significant’ step towards 5G mobile networks: ‘The promise of 5G is endless; it will be a game changer and it will change the way we live, work and engage. We look forward to working closely with our partners for developing a robust 5G ecosystem in India.’

In a related development, meanwhile, state-owned operator Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has inked a network modernisation agreement with Nokia to support the launch of LTE and VoLTE technologies. Under the agreement, Nokia will upgrade the operator’s infrastructure in ten states: Maharashtra, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Chattisgarh, Goa, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala and Telangana. The rollout will comprise, amongst others, Nokia’s Single RAN software, IMS and Session Border Controller (SBC) solutions.