With the launch of 4G services in Tamil Nadu and Jammu & Kashmir, Aircel become the only private telecom operator to offer all the three existing technologies of 2G, 3G and 4G in these markets. The launch comes within a month of recent 4G LTE deployment in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bihar and Odisha.
Aircel is the second company in India, after Airtel, to launch 4G services using LTE technology. The company holds 20 MHz of spectrum in the 2,300 MHz band, called broadband wireless access (BWA) spectrum, across eight circles – Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu, West Bengal, Bihar, Odisha, Assam and North East and Jammu & Kashmir.
As per the guideline by the government, 2015 is the last year for all companies who won BWA spectrum to roll out services in at least 90 per cent of the service areas, failing which the Department of Telecom will have the right to withdraw the radiowaves.
The licensee will have to ensure that at least half the areas under rural telecom exchanges get the required street level coverage. Reliance Jio Infocomm, Tikona Digital and Auger are the other holders who are yet to start their services.