Bharti Airtel, a leading global telecom services provider with operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa, on Tuesday launched India’s first 4G service in Kolkata.
Bharti Airtel has selected ZTE Corporation to plan, design, supply and deploy its 4G network in Kolkata, which will allow its subscribers to experience high-speed wireless internet access.
Airtel has launched the service on a state-of-the-art network based on TD-LTE, making India one of the first countries in the world to commercially deploy this cutting-edge technology. With this launch, India joins the most advanced telecom markets in the world and marks the beginning of a new chapter in the country’s telecom success story.
Airtel’s 4G (TD-LTE) network was launched by Kapil Sibal, minister of Communications and Information Technology. The launch will trigger a new phase of accelerated equitable and inclusive economic growth through proliferation of broadband services as envisioned by the government in the draft National Telecom Policy.
Commenting on the launch, Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman and Managing Director, Bharti Airtel said, “Today’s launch is a major milestone for India and Airtel. Over the past 15 years Airtel has been at the forefront of India’s telecom revolution and has set the technology trends in India by aligning with the global standards”.
We are delighted to now provide leadership in setting the technology standard for 4G services in India by introducing the cutting edge TD-LTE. We are confident that others will follow in this direction and participate in our pioneering effort of making TD-LTE the defacto 4G standard in India.”
“High speed wireless broadband has the potential to transform India, provide a robust platform for building the country’s digital economy and truly empower people. With one of the largest pools of young population in the world, India will see massive growth in consumption of data and content over mobile devices and proliferation of mobile commerce. I look forward to Airtel playing a pivotal role in shaping this exciting future for India.” Mittal added.
Airtel 4G , besides offering rich content, will allow superfast access to High Definition (HD) video streaming, multiple chatting, instant uploading of photos and much more. It will also help in bridging the digital divide and add to economic growth in rural areas by enhancing the reach of e-governance, e-health and e-education services.
In 2010, Airtel had successfully bid for BWA license spectrum in Kolkata, Karnataka, Punjab and Maharashtra (excluding Mumbai) circles. It is currently working towards rolling out state-of-the-art networks in circles other than Kolkata.
Bharti Airtel is one of the founding members of the Global TD-LTE Initiative (GTI) which was launched at the Mobile World Congress 2011. Other key founding members of this global initiative include China Mobile and Softbank Mobile.