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Airtel to invest Rs 60,000 Cr for upgrading network through Project Leap

Bharti Airtel has launched Project Leap, through which it will invest Rs 60,000 crore in the next three years on network upgradation and modernization. This includes a ten point program that consists of deploying base stations, future proofing the network, expanding mobile broadband networks and reducing its carbon footprint. According to Airtel, this investment is over and above the Rs 1,60,000 crores it has already invested in active and passive networks, fiber, spectrum, submarine cables and other systems. Airtel’s Vodafone-like naming scheme aside, the current program will essentially consist of: - Deploying over 70,000 base station in FY15-16 as well as making 60% of its network mobile broadband enabled by March 2016. Overall, the company plans to deploy over 160,000 base stations in the next 3 years. - Expanding broadband coverage to all towns and over 250,000 village by March 2016 and 500,000 villages in 3 years. - Deployment of a range of solutions including small cells, carrier aggregation solutions, wi-fi and the use of multiple technologies across various spectrum bands for providing voice and data services inside buildings. The company mentions that it will deploy over 100,000 solutions through a combination of these technologies in 3 years. - Deployment of 550,000 km of domestic and international fiber to lower latency and improve capacity. - Existing networks will be modernized by swapping legacy networks and base stations over 3 years, and replacing them with smaller, more compact and efficient technologies. These base stations will use a single radio access network…

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