Recommendations on 800 Mhz base price by month-end: Trai

Sectoral regulator Trai will release recommendations on the reserve price for auctioning the 800 MHz band, used for offering CDMA mobile services, by the end of this month.

"...We hope to get 800 MHz (recommendations) out by end of the month," Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) Chairman Rahul Khullar said at the India Digital Summit.

In December, Department of Telecom had asked Trai to give its recommendations on base price of CDMA spectrum. Following that the regulator released the consultation paper on the issue on December 30 inviting comments from stakeholders, and conducted an open house discussion on January 27.

It was the fourth time in six months that DoT had approached Trai for the recommendations on 800 MHz band.

Trai had earlier proposed that this band need not be auctioned due to lack of demand and recommended that DoT should explore using part of these radiowaves for E-GSM services. Only one CDMA player, Sistema Shyam Teleservices, participated in the auction for this band in March last year.

Khullar also said that the Authority will look at giving recommendations for 3G and 4G spectrum next year.

"...Really speaking we are looking at doing 1900 MHz, 2100 MHz and 700 MHz sometime next year," Khullar added.

He said Trai is looking at a transition from a 2G model to a 3G model on a pan India basis.

Khullar said as most people access Internet on mobile devices and not as much on desktop PCs, the growth of devices will allow the businesses in digital media to grow.

"A much larger number of people must have access. If they have access, you have a market, if they don't have access you don't have a market," he said.

He said, however, good speed is a must for accessing the Internet on mobile devices and it depends on spectrum.

"Speed will critically depend on how we get spectrum," Khullar said.

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