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Qualcomm to get BWA spectrum shortly: DoT

Delhi,Business/Economy, Thu, 19 Apr 2012 IANS

New Delhi, April 19 (IANS) US-based chipmaker Qualcomm would soon be able to roll out high-speed Internet services with the government willing to provide the firm broadband wireless access (BWA) spectrum shortly.


"Very shortly the final decision will be taken. There is nothing that is holding it back it is just a process that has to be taken internally," Telecom Secretary R. Chandrashekhar told reporters here on the sidelines of a function on the occasion of the formal renaming of department of IT as department of electronics and IT.


Qualcomm had paid $1 billion to acquire licenses in four circles -- Mumbai, Delhi, Haryana and Kerala -- in the BWA auction held in 2010.


But the DoT had rejected Qualcomm's license applications for not submitting the applications within the specified period and for seeking more than one licence.


According to DoT, the firm had set up four companies representing each circle instead of one.


However the firm last month received its internet service provider (ISP) licence after a Telecom Disputes Settlement and Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT) directed DoT to do so and is currently waiting to be allotted the spectrum.


Bharti Airtel which bagged licences to operate BWA services in four circles -- Kolkata, Maharashtra, Punjab and Karnataka -- has become the first operator to launch its services. It has launched BWA services based on 4G technology in Kolkata earlier this month.


The other players which have also bagged the spectrum are Reliance Infotel (earlier known as Infotel Broadband Services), Tikona, Aircel and Augere. They are yet to announce plans to roll-out 4G services.


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