Telecom Standards Development Society, India (TSDSI), a national SDO responsible for the development of Indian telecom standards, has successfully introduced an indigenous developed 5G candidate standard at the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) WP-5D Meeting in Geneva held during December 10-13, 2019. The TSDSI 5G technology will deliver, in addition to the ultra-fast, low-latency mobile internet and next-generation IoT services in both cellular and mm-wave spectral bands common to all 5G candidate standards, an additional technological enhancement that has the ability to provide broadband connectivity to rural users using ultra-long range cell sites. This enhancement will ensure 100% of India’s villages can be covered from towers located at panchayat villages where Bharatnet reaches, whereas nearly a third of such neighboring villages would be out of coverage otherwise. The Indian 5G submission exploits a new transmit waveform that increases cell range developed by research institutions in India and supported by some Indian companies.
The ITU, a UN body that that sets requirements for 5G, had earlier adopted the so-called Low-Mobility-Large-Cell (LMLC) use case as a mandatory 5G requirement in 2017. This requirement was adopted by ITU mainly as a result of sustained effort by Indian Government (DOT) and TSDSI to address the unique Indian rural broadband deployment scenario. Several countries supported this use case as they saw a similar need in their jurisdictions as well. During the recently concluded ITU-R WP-5D meeting, the TSDSI 5G submission passed a key milestone (STEP-3), where the Indian proposal was accepted as a candidate for evaluation as an IMT-2020 (5G) standard.
Adoption of TSDSI’s 5G standard in India will enable India to leapfrog in the 5G space, with key innovations introduced by Indian entities accepted as part of global wireless standards for the first time. The nation stands to gain enormously both in achieving the required 5G penetration in rural and urban areas as well as in nurturing the nascent Indian R&D ecosystem to make global impact. TSDSI’s efforts are aligned with the national digital communication policy that promotes innovation, equipment design and manufacturing out of India for the world market. The TSDSI 5G standard also has the potential to make a significant impact in several countries with poor rural broadband wireless coverage. TSDSI remains committed to the development of globally harmonized 5G standards with substantial innovations to address hitherto neglected needs of countries such as India.