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Roadmap to promote broadband connectivity, TRAI 

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India today released its recommendations on “Roadmap to promote broadband connectivity and Enhanced Broadband speed”.

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Department of Telecommunications (DoT) as per objectives to the National Digital Communications Policy – 2018 sought recommendations of the Authority on issues relating to the broadband speed and its categorizations, infrastructure creation, and promoting broadband connectivity.

Accordingly, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India issued a Consultation paper on “Roadmap to Promote Broadband Connectivity and Enhanced Broadband Speed” dated 20th August 2020 seeking comments and counter comments from stakeholders. Open House Discussion (OHD) was conducted on 18.02.2021 through video conferencing.

DoT vide it’s another reference letter dated 12th March 2021 sought consolidated and updated recommendations on proliferation of fixed-line broadband services in the Country. In this reference DoT referred additional issues relating to License Fee exemption and direct benefit to consumers. To consult these issues with stakeholders, a supplementary CP was issued on 19th May 2021. Open House Discussion (OHD) was conducted on 23.06.2021.

Based on the inputs received from the stakeholders and on its own analysis, TRAI has finalized its recommendations on ‘Roadmap to Promote Broadband Connectivity and Enhanced Broadband speed’. The salient features of the recommendations are as follows:

  1. Definition of broadband has been reviewed and minimum download speed for broadband connectivity revised upward from the present 512Kbps to 2Mbps. Based on download speed, fixed broadband has been categorized into 3 different categories – Basic, Fast and Super-fast.
  2. To encourage lakhs of cable operators to provide broadband services, the Authority’s past recommendation on “Definition of Revenue Base (AGR) for the Reckoning of Licence Fee and Spectrum usage Charges” has been reiterated.
  3. To enhance mobile broadband speed in rural and remote areas by fiberisation of the cellular networks, backhaul connectivity on optical fiber using the BharatNet network with Service Level Agreements should be made available to service providers. BCS Bureau
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