In order to set up private communication network, more than 20 companies have reportedly applied for the direct allocation of the 5G spectrum. The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) has conducted a study to determine the demand for the spectrum needed to build private networks. After the study was conducted, various private companies like Capgemini, Infosys, Larsen & Toubro, GMR, Tata Communications, Tejas Networks and Tata Power applied for direct allocation of 5G spectrum.
DoT made it clear that the current exercise was intended to study the demand and that submitting an application would not entail the applicant receiving spectrum, The Economic Times reported.
The report further stated that, in accordance with the demand study, companies with a net worth of more than Rs 100 crore will be allowed to apply for spectrum in order to build private network. Moreover, DoT has written to the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) to offer advice regarding the cost at which spectrum could be allocated.
In accordance with the policy for spectrum distribution unveiled in June, one of the decisions made by the department is to give captive networks direct access to airwaves but only after carrying out a demand study, the report added.
Till now it has not provided a date for the direct spectrum allocation. However, industry experts think that it would take the government one to two years to release specific allocation regulations.
Technology companies and telecom carriers have reportedly clashed over the issue of direct spectrum allotment to businesses for the construction of captive private networks. As per reports, telecom operators have been opposing the proposal to allocate spectrum directly to private companies. They claim that it will disrupt the fair playing field and provide technology players with a secret entry to offer 5G services to businesses. Meanwhile, tech companies have been lobbying for direct allocation for establishing captive networks. They claim that forcing them to take spectrum from telecoms would limit their flexibility and efficiency.