Sourced from: NepaliTelecom.com.
During the program, he also revealed the roadmap (action plan) for the development of 5G services in Nepal from 2021 to 2025. The NTA has already finished the 5G frequency identification and planning process and submitted it to the Frequency Committee for approval. According to the NTA’s plans, nationwide 5G coverage will be ready within four years.
5G trial will be conducted starting 2021
The frequency committee, chaired by the Minister of Communications and Information Technology, has already approved the 5G experiments. The NTA is also planning to provide Nepal Telecom a year of free 5G spectrum. As a result, the 5G testing is planned to be completed by 2021. NTA has previously addressed a letter to Ntc and is expecting the operator to provide a 5G trial strategy, modality, use case scenario, and commercial scope. Nepal Telecom has already begun preparing for 5G testing for this purpose.
The NTA has designated 700 MHz (n28) and 2.6 GHz as priority frequencies for the 5G experiment (n41).
5G Initial deployment
Following the opening of the spectrum allocation procedure to operators in 2021, the initial deployment of the 5G network will begin in both (700MHz and 2.6GHz) bands.
According to the roadmap action plan, commercial use of 5G in major cities is expected in 2022. The plan also calls for the sharing of both 4G and 5G technology bands. They have enabled all 4G and 5G bands to remain technology-neutral, as envisioned in Spectrum policy. Given the fact that the 5G ecosystem will take some time to emerge, operators can use the assigned bands to accelerate 4G.
5G Network Deployment Across the Country
According to the NTA’s current roadmap, nationwide 5G coverage will be accessible by 2025. NTA expects that with the steady development of 5G networks, 5G coverage will reach 70% of the population by 2028.
NTA further anticipates that the expanded 5G coverage would speed MBB development and potentially enable vertical industries. While mobile backhaul will be the first use case of the 5G network upon its initial deployment, vertical industries will take longer to realize. The agency also anticipates widespread 5G rollout to help the digital economy.
Benefits of a low-frequency spectrum
Mr. Khanal also discussed the significance of the low-spectrum band in spreading mobile broadband in a country like Nepal, which is 80 percent mountainous. According to him, the low band assisted the country in improving MBB Population coverage and user experience. At the same time, it facilitated the acceleration of digital activities for post-pandemic economic recovery. This will also allow the country to push the “Digital Nepal” concept further.
Nepal Telecom has secured 10MHz of Digital Dividend (DD) 800 MHz band (band 20) among Nepal’s low spectrum bands, which has the ability to boost the 4G population coverage ratio by 60% and average Downlink speed by 19%.
Similarly, after receiving a technology neutrality license in the 900MHz frequency, Ncell will launch 4G in the spectrum and expand its coverage and capacity. The adoption of 900MHz for 4G will boost the 4G population coverage ratio by 27% and the user average download speed by 25%.