“You will see some early adopters this year, and then I think by the second half of 2024, it will be a big growth in the enterprises,” said Sanjay Malik, Senior Vice President and Head of the India Market, Nokia, in a fireside chat with ETTelecom’s Danish Khan at the publication’s fourth edition of 5G Congress – 2023 organised with the TRAI Centre for Studies and Research.
“My belief is that the benefit is definitely there (in private networks). From an ecosystem perspective, telcos and the application providers are important. Whatever an enterprise requires, to give them a custom-based solution. It is just taking that initial time to get the whole thing together,” he said.
On the other hand, he noted that enhanced mobile broadband (eMBB) and fixed wireless are expected to be among the earliest use cases of the fifth-generation or 5G technology in India.
“…overall data capacity is something which should be seen as one of the use cases. We do talk about (5G) device prices, and penetration is pretty limited as of now. But that’s where I would say the ecosystem has been working well. 4G was successful because the ecosystem worked jointly. The same will happen with 5G. Secondly, FWA is being spoken about quite a lot,” said Malik.
Citing the US market, he said 90% of net additions in home broadband are being driven by FWA.
“We [read: India] have done quite a lot on wireless connectivity. But on the home broadband, a big gap is still there,” Malik said. He added that taking fibre connectivity to every home in the country is “not going to be easy”.
“That’s why fixed wireless access will be the way to go,” the executive said.
He underscored that India has a significant role to play in the standardisation of sixth-generation (6G) networks, and said that a large number of employees at Nokia’s Bengaluru office are working on 6G standardisation. “We have people who are working on standardisation and they have been talking to various government agencies.”
India, through the Department of Telecommunications (DoT), has played a key role in the framing of the International Telecommunication Union (ITU)’s 6G Framework, which has been finalised by the UN telecoms agency.
The Ministry of Communications (MoC) has said that the telecom department’s efforts in 6G standardisation have successfully resulted in the adoption of ubiquitous connectivity, ubiquitous intelligence, and sustainability as the key elements of the 6G technology.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi released India’s “Bharat 6G Vision” document on March 23 which envisages India to be a frontline contributor in the design, development, and deployment of 6G technology by 2030.