Broadband definition needs change, must be upgraded to 2 Mbps: BIF to Trai



Industry think tank BIF has said a revision of definition and speeds in India are long overdue and that it should be reviewed and upgraded to 2 Mbps from current 512 kbps which is “dismally low”.


The India Forum (BIF) has said communications technology has transformed radically over the past years and entirely new markets for data services have emerged across the nation. Numerous modern internet applications and use cases now require higher speeds than prescribed by the current definition, it said.



“It is our view that since the current definition of captures neither the development of the technology nor the Indian consumers’ appetite for high speed broadband services, it must be reviewed and redefined,” the BIF said in its submission to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai).


The submissions form part of BIF’s response to the regulator’s consultation paper on ‘road map to promote broadband connectivity and enhanced broadband speed’.


Trai had floated the discussion paper to seek stakeholder views on various issues including whether existing definition of broadband need to be reviewed along with threshold download and upload speeds; possibility of defining different categories of broadband depending on speeds; need for speed measurement programmes in the country amongst others.


When contacted, BIF President T V Ramachandran said that current definition of broadband in India at 512 kbps is dismally low, and the upgrade to 2 Mbps for the same is long overdue, even as per the national policy mandates, apart from the global benchmarks.


According to the BIF, the broadband speeds in India, even post the introduction of 4G, are less than half of the global good practices.


In its written response to the regulator, the BIF suggested that a network must comply with the requirement to provide 2 Mbps download and upload speeds to be considered a broadband connection, regardless of the medium or technology used to deliver the service.


Different categories of broadband such as ‘Basic, Fast, and Ultra-Fast’ would help set optional thresholds that can serve distinct use cases, it said.


Reviews must also be conducted periodically to keep pace with the development of access services and customer expectations, the BIF added.


“We also recommend the creation of additional tiers that represent increasing levels of quality and enhance transparency in the provision of services, but are entirely optional for service providers to guarantee,” the BIF has said.


Connectivity, faster than the 2 Mbps standard is now a “mainstream requirement” in the market for internet access.


It further recommended that Trai provide additional guidelines for higher quality broadband services, as the industry body mooted minimum downlink and uplink speed of 15 Mbps to define ‘fast broadband’, and 30 Mbps for ‘ultra-fast broadband’.


However, it added in the same breath that these could be just guidelines to help the customer have a uniform and valid comparison between offerings.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,

Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.

We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor





Source link