Huawei on Covid-19: India’s cellular traffic jumped up to 30% under lockdown


Written by Anuj Bhatia
| New Delhi |

Published: May 24, 2020 9:55:07 am

Huawei, covid 19, network infrastructure, India telecom sector, Jio, Airtel, Vodafone, 5G in India As social distancing, remote working and consumption of entertainment over the internet are the new normal in the post-COVID-19 world, the role of the telecom sector making people connected during the pandemic is critical.

Huawei estimates that India’s cellular traffic increased between 13 and 30 per cent during the lockdown, taking it to the top in terms of data consumption anywhere in the world. By the end of March, it had risen to an unprecedented 307 petabytes per day, said Radhey Shyam Sarda, CTO Wireless, Huawei Telecommunications India.

The coronavirus pandemic, Sarda said, “will make telecom infrastructure more critical and more important than ever”, adding how Huawei’s investment in critical network infrastructure technologies in India is paying off. He cited two examples. The Multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO) technology that generates three to five times more capacity compared to a traditional base station and Cloud Air for dynamic sharing of spectrum across the technologies.

“Yes, India’s telecom industry is going through certain stress but as far as the network traffic is concerned, we see it is continuously growing,” Sarda said. This accelerated adoption of digital has made ICT as critical as water and electricity, he added.

“Today, the telecom industry is dealing with on a daily basis to be able to adapt to scale and to guarantee that the network is in place,” said Emmanuel Coelho Alves, Senior Marketing Director, Huawei Technologies.

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On the status of 5G in India, Sarda said that work has been going on both the 5G field trial and spectrum auction. There are reports that claim that there won’t be a 5G spectrum auction in India this year, though the reason for the delay is not clear. While 5G-ready phones are already available in India, networks supporting 5G have to be developed and deployed.

The 5G rollout across the world is somewhat slower than expected. Many believe that COVID-19 could further add to the already slower-than-expected rollout of the next generation of wireless technology systems.

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