Airtel may kick start 4G services in Kolkata starting March 20th. Bharti Airtel both by revenue & customer-base is finally about to usher 4th Generation (4G) Services. The service will be first launched in Kolkata. We suspect Airtel wants to test the potency in relatively smaller market before coming to the larger metros. CEO Sanjay Kapoor had confirmed the news recently.
Though it will be the first company to do so for mobiles, Augere Wireless has been offering 4G through USB Dongles since February. Having paid almost Rs. 3,500 Crores (US$ 665 Million) way back in 2010 the company must be eager to reap its monetary benefits. Airtel has already finalized hardware vendors to roll out its service in the several metros including ZTE, Nokia Siemens for Maharashtra, Huawei for the Karnataka & Ericsson for Punjab.
The current 3G technology is barely capable to have uninterrupted Video Calls & quick delivery of MMS. However, come 4G, users will be able to have Hi-Def Video Conferencing & the dream of watching full length films & TV channels may soon become a reality.
However, the 4G will only work on mobiles which have the relevant 4th Generation capable hardware. Presently, most of the smartphones are limited to 3G or max 3.5 G. However, very few of them are true 4G capable. Under the circumstances, it will be interesting to see not just the service providers, but even manufactures scramble to offer newer devices. With 2G ghost still haunting & 3G not making money, we will have to wait & watch how this hereto unsupported technology fares in the Indian market.
Airtel has always been known to offer competitively priced tariffs which made it rise. Let’s see how it prices this new offering.