Thursday, 17 September 2009

Will India Get LTE? (Part 2)

I blogged a few weeks ago about whether India would get LTE and I had the opportunity to meet with a few of the the indian regulators at the LTE Asia conference last week.

They confirmed that that auction would go ahead this year on December the 7th, but since there have been so many delays and setbacks already, who knows... The WCDMA auction kicks off first, with the CDMA and WiMAX auctions taking palce 2 days later. I was also told that the FDD spectrum will only be allowed for 3G networks and TDD will likewise be for WiMAX deployments only. The TDD spectrum is expected to sell for a much lower price than FDD spectrum - no surprises there.

Its does indeed seem that the Indian regulators are keen on WiMAX and this is simply down to the infrastructure cost. Currently in India, the ARPU from a subscriber in the cities is $4 and just $2.50 in rural areas! Although the WCDMA networks are likely to be upgraded to LTE at some point, can LTE ever be affordable for India?

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