5G services
Consumers may need new smartphones to enjoy the full benefits of 5G. Pic: iSock

Govt plans to provide 5G services to over 200 cities by March 2023

Earlier this month, 5G services were rolled out in few cities in India and more are expected to get them in the coming months. Union telecom minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said that the government is aiming to cover over 200 cities by March next year and then it plans to expand the 5G services to more towns as well as rural areas.

It is still not known which cities will be among the 200 that will be covered by March 2023.

Initially, the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) had said that 13 major cities would first get 5G. But this didn’t happen.

Also read: India to push Apple, Samsung for faster upgrade to support 5G

Only a few cities covered

Reliance Jio first offered 5G services in only four cities — Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, and Varanasi. Airtel, on the other hand, did manage to roll out 5G in Mumbai, Bangalore, Gurugram, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Delhi, Varanasi, and Chennai. The telcos did say that they will spread support for 5G in more cities as they become 5G-ready, as per a report by India Today.

As of now, there are no details about Vodafone Idea’s 5G services. No company has yet revealed prices for 5G plans; they are currently offering the network for free while running 5G trials across India.

Vaishnaw also said that at least four cities of Odisha will get 5G by March 2023 and it will be available over most of the state by the end of next year. “In the first phase, four-five cities of Odisha will get 5G services by March 2023, and by the end of next year, around 80 per cent area of the state will be covered,” he said.

High speed 5G

The 5G network is said to deliver a maximum data transfer speed of up to 20Gbps per second or more, 20 times more than 1Gbps speed that 4G gives.

Also read: Apple to roll out 5G software update in India this December

As per tests conducted by India Today at India Mobile Congress (IMC) event, Airtel 5G offered 306Mbps download speed and 25.4Mbps upload speed. 4G, on the other hand, gave only 50.5Mbps download and 1.87Mbps upload speeds. While this is not the highest 5G speed result compared to what Ookla got in its 5G trials, it is still good to experience faster internet speeds.

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