Airtel, one of India’s leading and oldest telecom companies, announced its 5G services will become available to its users in at least eight cities from today. On the inaugural day of the India Mobile Congress, Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman of Bharti Airtel, said Airtel 5G will go live in New Delhi, Varanasi, Mumbai, and Bengaluru in addition to four other cities. While he did not mention what the other four cities will be, they will likely be one of the cities the Department of Telecom earmarked earlier. Also Read - Jio launches 5 new international roaming plans ahead of FIFA World Cup 2022: Check details
Mittal said Airtel will expand 5G coverage in India by 2023, while in less than two years in March 2024, the company hopes to bring 5G connectivity to every nook and corner of the country. He made the announcement right before Prime Minister Narendra Modi kicked off 5G services in India. Also Read - Realme GT Neo 3 gets Android 13-based Realme UI 3.0 update: Check details
Airtel’s 5G roadmap
Airtel was the first telecom company in India to announce its 5G roadmap. Ahead of Reliance Jio’s announcement in August, the Mittal-led company said it will introduce 5G in select Indian cities from October. While metropolitan cities will get the service on a priority basis, some major tier-II cities will also become 5G enabled by the end of 2021. Next year will primarily be focused on the expansion of 5G services to more cities. Also Read - Epic Games introduces Unreal Engine 5.1 with improvements for Lumen, Nanite and more
Even though Airtel 5G is now available in at least eight cities, the availability of 5G will be limited to select locations. This means that not everyone will be able to use 5G even if they reside in cities that have 5G connectivity now live. The coverage of 5G services to more locations within a city is expected to grow in the coming days.
According to the Department of Telecom, the following cities are eligible for the 5G rollout by the end of this year: Ahmedabad, Bengaluru, Chandigarh, Chennai, Delhi, Gandhinagar, Gurugram, Hyderabad, Jamnagar, Kolkata, Lucknow, Mumbai, and Pune. The four unknown cities could be one of them. We have reached out to Airtel to get clarity on the names of the remaining cities.