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DoT plans to consult TRAI on satellite communication spectrum allocation: Report

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In Short:

The Department of Telecommunications is seeking guidance from TRAI on how to allocate spectrum to satellite communication companies, aiming for clarity on pricing and allocation methods. Eutelsat OneWeb and Jio Satellite Communications are poised to offer services for enterprises, government agencies, and defence bodies, once spectrum is allocated. The process will take time as TRAI consults and final decisions are made by the telecom department. Satcom services will bridge the digital divide in remote areas.

DoT to Seek TRAI Views on Allocating Spectrum to Satcom Companies

dot to seek trai views on allocating

The Department of Telecommunications (DoT) is planning to ask TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) about how to proceed with allocating spectrum to satellite communication (satcom) companies. The telecom department will seek the views of TRAI to understand the correct pricing and allocating mechanism of the spectrum to the satcom sector. Further, there could be some changes made to the existing licenses to ensure that clarity arrives for the satcom companies that have been administratively allocated spectrum.

Clarity for Satcom Companies

With this clarity, satcom companies will be able to understand the scope of services they can offer to their customers, said a PTI report.

Front Runners in India

In India, Bharti-backed Eutelsat OneWeb and Jio Satellite Communications Limited are the frontrunners to offer satcom services to enterprises. Both companies have showcased their technology at the India Mobile Congress (IMC) 2023 event. One thing that was worth noting is that none of the companies showcased anything around the consumer segment. The solutions were tailored for enterprises, government agencies, and defense bodies.

Progress of Companies

Eutelsat OneWeb is waiting for the government to allocate spectrum so that it can go ahead with offering services commercially. The company has all the necessary approvals from the government and space bodies in India. Jio Satellite Communications Limited is reaching that point, but there’s no need to rush right now.

Government’s Approach

The Government of India (GoI) is not in any rush to allocate satellite spectrum. Only after TRAI is done with the consultation around the matter and has published its recommendations, the telecom department will take the final decisions. Thus, it will take some time for India to get commercial satcom services from Eutelsat OneWeb and Jio Satellite Communications Limited.

Importance of Satcom Services

Satcom services will enable far-flung regions of the country to get access to high-speed internet connectivity to ensure that the digital divide is driven out.

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