- March 7, 2021
- Posted by: OptimizeIAS Team
- Category: DPN Topics
The auction saw the end of India’s first auction of telecommunications spectrum in five years, with the government generating a revenue of ₹77,815 crore from the exercise. Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio accounted for close to 60% of the spectrum bought, followed by Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea.
In the auction that was held on March 1 and 2, the government offered spectrum for 4G in the following bands: 700 MHz, 800 MHz, 900 MHz, 1,800 MHz, 2,100 MHz, 2,300 MHz and 2,500 MHz.
‘Spectrum’, which, in this context, stands for the portion of the electromagnetic wave range that is suitable for communication purposes. As this is a huge economic resource, which also provides unimaginable benefits to any population, it is controlled by the government.
“Spectrum bands have different characteristics, and this makes them suitable for different purposes. In general, low-frequency transmissions can travel greater distances before losing their integrity, and they can pass through dense objects more easily.
Less data can be transmitted over these radio waves, however. Higher-frequency transmissions carry more data, but are poorer at penetrating obstacles.”
In this context, hertz is a measure of the number of cycles per second, and 1 megahertz stands for 1 million hertz. Telecom providers cover their bases by using both low and high-frequency bands.
Why spectrum is needed?
Devices such as cellphones and wireline telephones require signals to connect from one end to another. These signals are carried on airwaves (medium of radio waves), which must be sent at designated frequencies to avoid any kind of interference.
These airwaves are called spectrum, which is subdivided into bands which have varying frequencies.
All these airwaves are sold for a certain period of time, after which their validity lapses, which is generally set at 20 years.