- Reliance Jio has promised to bring 5G to India in the second half of 2021.
- RIL Chairman Mukesh Ambani has promised an “indigenous-developed network.”
Speaking at the India Mobile Congress 2020 virtual event, Reliance Industries’ Chairman and proprietor of the world’s fastest-growing telecom operator, Mukesh Ambani, proclaimed that Jio will “pioneer the 5G revolution in India in the second half of 2021.
“It will be powered by indigenous-developed network, hardware, and technology components,” Ambani added, expressing solidarity with the government’s campaign for a self-sufficient India.
Ambani also hinted that Jio aims to make 5G access affordable in the country. This isn’t really surprising as the carrier was the first to bring dirt-cheap mobile internet services and free calling in India when it debuted its services four years back. It’s also rumored to be working on ultra-low-cost 5G smartphones for India in a bid to popularize the technology.
Last month, Jio announced that it has partnered with Qualcomm to fast track the development and roll-out of 5G services in India.
Meanwhile, competing carrier Airtel has said that it won’t bid for 5G airwaves in the auction next year if the government sets prices too high. Vodafone-Idea also has sizeable pending dues with the government and might not be able to afford 5G spectrum when it goes up for sale. This leaves only Jio in the picture, and with today’s announcement, the telco will likely be the first to introduce 5G in India.