Verizon: private 5G to bring real economic benefits for India

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US-based telecom and enterprise services provider Verizon said that 5G private networks will result in “real economic benefits” in countries like India. It also supported enterprises’ demand for spectrum allocation.

Verizon through its enterprise arm, Verizon Enterprise, is currently looking to partner with system integrators to develop 5G enterprise applications in India using its mobile edge computing platform.

“It is an opportunity to bring these new technologies (5G private networks) in marketplaces like India to create real economic benefits,” Robert Le Busque, Regional Vice President, Asia Pacific at Verizon Business Group was quoted by the Economic Times.

Busque said that with spectrum allocated for captive usage, enterprises could achieve efficiencies and competitive advantage.

The Digital Communications Commission’s (DCC) decision to not accept the telecom regulator’s recommendation to allow spectrum allocation to enterprises for private 5G networks.

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) had recently recommended allowing private enterprises to obtain the necessary spectrum on a leasing basis for deploying private 5G networks.

However, the country’s private telcos had opposed the TRAI recommendations and said that such a move will dramatically alter the industry dynamics and hurt the financial health of the industry rather than improve it.

Following the opposition, the Digital Communications Commission’s (DCC) had also rejected the recommendations to allow spectrum allocation to enterprises for private 5G networks. The DCC, is an inter-ministerial panel with the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) secretary as its chairman.

Verizon Business Chief Revenue Officer, Sowmyanarayan Sampath, separately told Business Line newspaper that spectrum should not be locked down in a few hands. “Our overall thesis on the spectrum is that we want more spectrum to be allocated for services…that is our policy stand globally on how it goes.”

The enterprise segment contributes nearly 30% to Verizon’s annual revenue of $133 billion.

The company had in October 2020 launched a private 5G platform for enterprises located in Europe and the Asia Pacific region. It had then partnered with Nokia to provide private 5G wireless network solutions for enterprises.

Verizon said that the Finnish telecom gear maker will be its only partner for private 5G networks in India. Nokia recently said that it was ready to tap the 5G private networks-related opportunity with Indian enterprises.

Busque told the publication that Verizon is offering awareness programs to enterprise customers to help them operate and create competitive advantages on the back of 5G-led opportunities. “We are the first to deploy 5G anywhere in the world and have unparalleled expertise. We have already done that with great maturity elsewhere around the world, and can bring that knowledge to India,” he was quoted as saying.

Busque said that Verizon is working on several proofs of concept (PoC) focusing on how to maximise the value of technology and “to make large enterprises understand what competitive advantage we can provide to them with a cutting edge and competitive landscape,”

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