5G needs to happen faster in India: Top Intel executive

New Delhi, Oct 14 (IANS) India needs to roll out 5G faster in order to take advantage of the economic benefits it can bring to the nation, a top Intel executive said here on Monday.

“For 5G to happen, the network needs to move from proprietary-fixed, function-based — which is what it is today in most parts — to open standards-based scalabale, programmeble, agile and Cloud-centric network. As Cloud is elastic, so should be the network,” Prakash Mallya, Vice President and Managing Director, Sales and Marketing Group — Intel India, told IANS on the sidelines of the India Mobile Congress (IMC) 2019 here.

According to industry leaders, spectrum auction and pricing are two biggest concerns that need to be addressed for faster 5G roll out.

During the keynote address, IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said that spectrum auction will be done within the current financial year, assuring the industry that the government is bringing some reforms in spectrum pricing as well. “5G is the order of the day. We have given permission to companies for 5G trials,” Prasad told the audience.

According to a forecast by industry body GSMA, 5G connections in India are set to reach 88 million by 2025, equivalent to around seven per cent of the total connections base in the country.

This will leave India trailing its regional peers such as China, that is set to see almost 30 per cent of its total connections base on 5G by 2025.

For 5G to happen faster in India, the industry also must come together, said Mallya.

“Industry must come together for 5G to happen faster. That is why we engage with the ecosystem — Nokia and Ericsson are great examples of our partnerships, enabling usages across different verticals,” the Intel executive said, adding that the company builds technology for every piece of the network.

Intel is also working proactively with the government towards creating standards for 5G.

“Intel is playing the role of a catalyst in enabling 5G. We are working with all the telecom operators in the country,” Mallya noted.

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