Indian teleco Bharti Airtel has said that the first wave of 5G smartphones in the country should not cost above the Rs 21,300 ($300) mark with in order to drive mass consumption of the upcoming ultra-fast wireless broadband service, The Economic Times reports.
“5G smartphones are now priced around $1,000 (Rs 71,000) globally, which needs to drop to a maximum $300 for unlocking the next wave of mass data consumption in India,” chief technology officer at Bharti Airtel Randeep Sekhon said.
According to industry analysts, due to the growing global maturity of devices, 5G smartphones will likely enter the Indian market faster than any previous generation of mobile broadband technology. The current predicted mass availability of 5G devices is 2021.
The Indian government plans to conduct the 5G spectrum sale in 2019 and has already issued guidelines for 5G trials across all spectrum bands that are available. All telecom operators registers in India can apply for a licence to participate in the trials and auction.
Currently, Airtel is looking forward to the 5G field trials to radiate signals and test 5G use cases such as enhanced mobile broadband on smartphones and fixed wireless at homes, Sekhon said.