India seems to be ready for 5G trials. According to reports citing industry sources, telecom service providers such as Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio and Vodafone Idea have submitted their application for 5G trials, which are widely expected to begin between January and March this year.
Telecom companies such as Huawei, ZTE, Ericsson, Nokia and Samsung are participating in these trials. Reports further say that Airtel has joined hands with Huawei, ZTE, Ericsson and Nokia for 5G trials in India, whereas Reliance Jio has come to terms with Samsung. Meanwhile, Vodafone Idea is said to have filed its application for 5G trials and the joint venture has partnered Huawei, ZTE, Ericsson and Nokia for these trials.
Meanwhile, Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio and Vodafone Idea are yet to comment on these rumoured developments.
Last month, Telecom Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad had said that the government will allocate airwaves to all telecom service providers including Huawei for conducting trials of super-fast speed 5G network and India will not bar any equipment suppliers in the upcoming trials for 5G.
"We are pleased that Department of Telecom (DoT) is progressing ahead with the 5G trials to ensure the implementation of National Digital Communications Policy," Rajan Mathews, Director General of industry body -- the Cellular Operators' Association of India (COAI) -- told a news agency PTI.
Last month, Prasad had assured that India is working to deploy affordable, secure 5G services in India. Prasad had also said that no case of any first world countries disapproving 5G spectrum services due to security reasons has come to its notice. During the question hour in the Rajya Sabha, the minister had said the standards for IMT (International Mobile Telecommunications) 2020, also known as 5G technologies are being finalised.
In related news, 5G technology may also increase cybersecurity risks, researchers have warned. Security researchers say the lack of perfections in telecom gears and 5G equipment, as well as customer frameworks and administration by authorities, could enable an attacker to severely sabotage 5G network infrastructure.
(With inputs from PTI)