BSNL seeks help from Nokia, ZTE to stabilize its 4G network

BSNL said the core of its 4G network is being developed by the Center for Development of Telematics (C-DoT)

Indian state-run telco Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) is reportedly seeking technical assistance from Nokia and China’s ZTE to help integrate previous technology into its new 4G network, according to local press reports.

Indian newspaper The Economic Times reported that Nokia and ZTE were the network equipment suppliers for BSNL’s existing 2G and 3G networks. Now, the Indian carrier is seeking assistance from ZTE and Nokia to help integrate its 2G and 3G networks with its domestically developed 4G network.

BSNL is looking for Nokia and ZTE’s help in stabilizing its outdoor 4G services by leveraging their core network expertise, the report added.  

The core of BSNL’s 4G network is indigenous, developed by the Center for Development of Telematics (C-DoT). Radio equipment for the 4G networks is being supplied by local company Tejas Networks, with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) acting as the system integrator. The Indian authorities had said that only Indian telecoms vendors will be allowed to supply equipment for state-run telcos BSNL and MTNL’s 4G and 5G projects, as part of the country’s efforts to reduce dependence on international providers.

C-DoT has previously conducted successful trials of its indigenous 4G core in BSNL’s commercial network in Chandigarh and Ambala.

BSNL recently said it has already activated 3,500 4G base transceiver stations (BTS) across the country. These 4G sites were deployed in a number of states including Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh West.

BSNL highlighted that these 3,500 sites offer 4G services on both a commercial and trial basis, adding that BSNL aims to launch full commercial 4G services nationwide soon.

A BSNL executive noted that commercial services could be launched once the telco’s 4G network reached 20,000 active base stations at a national level. BSNL previously said it expects to provide 4G services nationwide through the deployment of 100,000 base stations.

BSNL is targeting a 20% market share of the country’s overall mobile market by the end of 2024 by accelerating the rollout of its 4G network, according to recent press reports.

BSNL’s workers union had recently urged the government to use rival operator Vodafone Idea’s network to initially offer 4G service in the country.

In a recent letter to telecom minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited Employee Union (BSNLEU) General Secretary P. Abhimanyu said that BSNL’s customers are porting out “massively” because the operator is not currently offering 4G services.

The government of India is Vodafone Idea Limited’s largest shareholder, with a 33.1% stake. U.K.’s Vodafone and India’s Aditya Birla Group jointly own 50.4% of Vodafone Idea.

According to the reports, the potential use of Vodafone Idea’s 4G network will only be a temporary measure until BSNL’s 4G network is commercially available.

Comments are closed.