Ankita Lahiri | February 7, 2014
As the latest spectrum auction continues, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has plans to launch spectrum in the range of 1900-700 MHz by next year. This was announced by Dr Rahul Khullar, chairman, TRAI, at the India Digital Summit, organized by Internet & Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) in Delhi.
“We have to make the transition from the old 2G model, and that too on a pan-India basis. But that will require a lot of hard work and a lot of encouragement. Hard work in convincing people to get the spectrum and encouragement in the sense that we will have to price the spectrum, vis-à-vis, because there is something better down the road,” said Dr Khullar.
Dr Khullar was making the statement in the context of the data provided by Rajan Anandan, chairman, IAMAI and managing director, Google India, which suggested that 80 percent of the new users that are added annually still rely on the 2G model.
Dr Khullar also mentioned accessing internet through mobile and not desktops. In order for that to happen, two things have to be in place: accessibility and speed. He elaborated that there has to be a larger number of people who need to access internet on their phones.
The Chairman also spoke about broadband and data protection in India. Citing the example of the National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN), Khullar said that in India we set targets for ourselves, but implementation becomes a problem: “The NOFN was started off with ambitious goals. Two years down the line, I know we are nowhere.”
Elaborating the need to protect data, Dr Khullar said that unless the private parties take the matter in their own hands, nobody will.
“Where do you draw the line?” he said. “We have nothing for data protection, other than what is in the IT Act. The issue will not go away. Based on the events of the last six months, it will come to the forefront, rather soon.”
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