Monday, 3 October 2011

New spectrum bands allocated for telecom services

The Communication and IT Ministry on 30 October, 2011 allocated at least five new frequency bands, including the 700 Mhz band, for telecom services. Small chunks of spectrum for developing indigenous technologies have also been reserved under the National Frequency Allocation Plan (NFAP) 2011. The new Plan, which gives the broad direction for future spectrum allocation, will come into effect from October 1. The Plan looks forward to earmark the entire 700 Mhz band for mobile broadband services. The Ministry of Information and Broadcasting had also set its sight on this band for Mobile TV services but NFAP has pushed the broadcasting services to another band. 
The S-band, currently being used exclusively by INSAT systems for satellite based services including meteorological data dissemination has been opened up for broadband services now. 

If the Plan is implemented then telecom companies could get access to about 200 Mhz spectrum more, which could boost broadband coverage. To promote local research and development in the country, the allocation plan suggests earmarking small chunks of spectrum in the much-sought-after 900 Mhz band for indigenously developed technologies. This band is currently being used for GSM mobile services and is considered prime location because of its favourable propagation characteristics.


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