India rolls out 5G services, Modi calls it a step into a new era

NEW DELHI – Prime Minister Narendra Modi rolled out 5G services in India on Saturday, calling it a “step into the new era”.

The launch in select cities will cover the entire country in the next few years, a government statement said.

Modi launched the long-awaited services aimed at providing seamless coverage, high data rates, less internet connection lag and ultra-reliable communications in the presence of India’s leading telecoms companies in New Delhi.

“This event will go down in history,” Modi said at the launch. He said it was a “step towards a new era in the country” and “the beginning of infinite possibilities”.

Bharti Airtel is rolling out its 5G services in eight cities on Saturday and has set March 2024 as the deadline for nationwide coverage of up to 5,000 cities.

Telecom company Reliance Jio plans to launch in four metro areas in October and hopes to reach most cities and towns in 18 months.

The government said the cumulative economic impact of 5G on India is expected to reach $450 billion by 2035.

Research agency OMDIA predicts that India will rank just behind China and the US in the world rankings by 2026 with 369 million 5G subscriptions – currently more than half of all 5G subscriptions worldwide. According to the Business Standard newspaper, India has ousted Japan from third place with 147 million customers.

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed or redistributed without permission. India rolls out 5G services, Modi calls it a step into a new era

Sarah Y. Kim

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