cmn_Telenor office

Norwegian telecom operator Telenor has said that it will launch 4G services in 5-8 cities in India within the next 6 months, reports the Times of India. The announcement came at the Mobile World Congress where the company said it was already in talks with other operators to increase its spectrum holding through trading.

The report mentions that the company has already launched 4G network last week in Varanasi, on a very narrow band of 1.4 MHz. Depending on the outcome of this project, 4G services will be extended to other cities.

Note that earlier this month Telenor reported that its active internet subscriber base stood at 26.3% of its connections for the quarter ended December 31, 2015 (Q4 2015). The company reported a total connection base of 42.6 million for the quarter, translating to an internet subscriber base on 11.07 million.

Tapad acquisition: Earlier this month,Telenor acquired 95% stake in marketing technology firm Tapad for $360 million on a debt and cash-free 100% basis. With this acquisition, Telenor would enter the advertising technology vertical and gain expertise in digital marketing and analytics.

4G deployments in India:

– Earlier this month, Vodafone India completed first phase 4G rollout under the 1800 MHz band in Delhi NCR cities, Bangalore and Kolkata. It had also rolled out in Kerala circle Kochi in Dec ‘15 & Kozhikode on Jan ‘16.

– In January, RCom entered into a pact with Reliance Jio for 4G services. RCOM and Jio have signed agreements in spectrum allotment in 800MHz band across 9 Circles from RCOM to Reliance Jio. The companies also agreed to share spectrum in 800MHz band across 17 Circles.

– In December, last year Idea launched its 4G services in 5 south Indian states: Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Telangana and Tamil Nadu.

– The same month, Reliance Jio launched its 4G services for employees when it said it would launch its 4G offerings commercially starting March 2016.

– In November, last year, Idea Cellular entered into an agreement to acquire the rights to use spectrum currently with Videocon Telecom in the 1800 MHz band in two key circles – Maharashtra and Uttar Pradesh (West) – for Rs 3310 crore.

– In October ‘15, Tikona Digital said it would start providing 4G broadband services in the first half of 2016 across 30 cities in five telecom circles.

– In August ‘15, Videocon said it would launch its 4G services in MP, Gujarat, Haryana and Punjab by the end of this year.

– Airtel, which launched commercial operations for 4G services in 296 towns and cities in August, is currently offering 4G data packs starting from Rs 25.

– Reliance Jio Infocomm claims that it is now present in all 29 states in India and has a direct physical presence in nearly 18,000 cities and towns.

Also read: TRAI’s reserve price for spectrum auctions could mean more 4G or none