Another day, another blow as the Indian economy is targeting to reach $5 trillion by 2025. Indian PM Narendra Modi finally unveiled fifth generation (5G) network technology in India early today at the sixth edition of India Mobile Congress (IMC) 2022 in New Delhi amidst the bigwigs from Bharti Airtel, Reliance Jio, and Vodafone Idea (Vi).
PM Modi launched 5G in India alongside Ashwini Vaishnav (Telecom Minister), K Rajaram (Telecom Secretary) as well as Devusinh Chauhan (Minister of State for Communications). Here’s the entire story that will surely make you proud as an Indian.
October 1st marked the launch of 5G in India
After months of planning, 5G spectrum auction, infrastructure building, and more, PM Modi finally launched 5G in India which is now available in selected cities. It is estimated to roll out across the whole nation in a few years via phased rollouts. PM Modi visited all the pavilions at the IMC 2022 starting with Reliance Jio where he witnessed ‘True 5G’ joined by Reliance Industries Limited chairman Mukesh Ambani.
The event was a huge success as PM Modi and everyone present at the venue got a look into how 5G will revolutionize the world. 5G is a cutting-edge next-gen technology that is estimated to be 30 times faster than 4G. It can be leveraged in not just gaming and calling but also across a multitude of industries including virtual reality, self-driving cars, smart farming, and smart healthcare and the possibilities are infinite. In fact, PM Modi got to test out 5G’s capacities operating a remote vehicle in Sweden connected via 5G to the New Delhi IMC 2022 venue.
Airtel 5G Launched in India
With an investment of more than INR 43,084 crore, Bharti Airtel is the second largest 5G telecom company in India. The 5G services from Airtel have been launched across eight cities including Bengaluru, Varanasi, Mumbai, and Delhi. The company plans to cover most of the major cities in India by March 2023 while reaching a Pan-India level by March 2024 with 5G coverage across the East-West-South-North of India.
When it comes to the speeds, Airtel’s chairman Sunil Mittal stated that 5G is approx 30 times faster than 4G. The Airtel 5G will be able to deliver data speeds of 1Gbps with a latency of 20ms as per its demo conducted in Mumbai and Gurugram earlier this year. With that being said, 4G has a latency of 60-70ms which goes around to show just how fast 5G will be once it arrives in the general masses.
Reliance Jio 5G Launched in India
Reliance too launched its 5G services in India as well. It demonstrated its True 5G services at Reliance AGM 2022 where the smartphone reached speeds of 1.09Gbps which goes around showing just how powerful 5G will be.
However, according to 91Mobiles, the speeds will drop considerably in the real world to approx 420Mbps due to countless reasons although this means both Airtel and Vi will face the same fate. It is because 5G is not as penetrative as 4G which means you will need more antennas spaced around other locations will eventually cause a loss of speed.
Mukesh Ambani delivered a speech at the 5G Launch during IMC 2022 where he summarised 5G as ‘5 Goals’ and how it will effectively transform the lives of 1.4 billion citizens in India and more. It will play a vital role in digitization and intelligent data management be it for the information sector, trade industry, energy infrastructure, and more. It will bring AI to all the domains in India giving it a much-needed boost in becoming India a high-value added digital solutions and services exporter.
Internet of things (IoT) is another application where 5G will allow for robust flow over automation, food delivery, and transportation among others.
Vi 5G Launched in India
Vodafone Idea (Vi) has launched its 5G coverage in India as well with an estimated 5.92Gbps of top speed as per its 5G trials conducted in Pune. The telco juggernaut recently reported 3.7Gbps of speeds on mmWave while another test conducted in Gandhinagar gave it a speed of up to 1.5GBps. For instance, a 1Gbps speed is enough to download an entire movie in less than a second.
What Does 5G Brings On The table
When it comes to what 5G can do for you and change your life as a result, there are a lot of benefits of using it. First, as mentioned, it can download a 3GB movie in a just which would otherwise take more than an hour. Apart form that, a low latency at 1ms brings actions and reactions to stimuli faster than ever. A 5G network will work across the industries be it the healthcare, education, disaster management to name a few. It will bring the capability of streaming 4K videos on smartphones without any buffering.
There’s AR and VR onboard so you can leverage its prowess as well. With 5G, users will be able to enable 4K feeds from public places without any hassle.
Potential Applications of 5G
Unlike the common notion that 5G is just another upgraded network technology that will bring faster downloads and upload speeds, there are numerous use cases where it can be leveraged.
For explanation, let’s consider gaming as one of the applications of 5G. With 4G, there have always been issues with internet speeds since the latency is always north of 60ms or more. Latency is considered as the time delay it takes for instructions (in this case, a gunshot or a punch in-game) to be relayed to the internet before the character itself performs the actions over the internet. With 5G, the latency rate is expected to be 5ms which means users with 5G gaming will have an upper hand in quick reactions over those on 4G networks.
EVs are another sector where India is shining and 5G can add that particular element needed to boost it further. With self-driving cars catching up at speed, it becomes indispensably important to tether to a reliable network for the system to drive an actual car on road.
Thanks to improved download and upload speeds, and lower latency, stimuli can be processed into actions at a blazing fast speed. In fact, it can be a decision worth someone’s life such as in the case of an incoming pedestrian walking on a road (assuming there’s still a green signal from cars to ride) allowing the system to react sooner and take action accordingly.
As it goes without saying, Vi, Bharti Airtel, and Reliance Jio are the biggest players in the 5G market where Airtel reportedly spent Rs 43,084 crore to acquire the needed 5G spectrum. Perhaps, it goes synonymous with how Bharti Airtel was the first telecom company to roll out 4G in India. Here’s a breakout of everything you need to know regarding how telcos in India are playing with 5G across speeds, pricing, availability, and rollout among others.