RIL's Infotel Broadband to offer 4G Services

Reliance is not only BIG but it’s also deep and diverse. From retail, petroleum to movies and telecom, it wants to be a truly ubiquitous brand. And if speculations yield, Ambani brothers’ new found love would give other top Fortune 500 companies a run for their money.

Reliance always comes up with surprises for its shareholders. The recent one is acquisition of Infotel. Reliance Industries Ltd’s (RIL)’s acquisition of Infotel Broadband is set to bring second phase of revolution in the sector.

RIL group chairman Mukesh Ambani said that the company will offer 4G services. After acquisition of Infotel Broadband, Mukesh Ambani said that the company plans to set up a Wireless Innovation Center in Mumbai.

“Such a platform is also aligned with India’s national priorities, by enabling national transformation and “digital inclusion” of its people,” sai Ambani.

Mukesh Ambani’s speech is set to alarm its competitors mainly Bharti Airtel, Vodafone and Idea. It will be interesting to watch developments in Infotel Broadband.

Much has changed in these eight years since Reliance first ventured into the Infocomm space with 2G CDMA based mobile services. From less than 5 million mobile users in 2001, India today has grown to nearly 600 million mobile users, and continues to add close to 20 million new customers every month.

India is now the second largest, and the fastest growing, telecom market in the world.Today, India has less than 1% market penetration, compared to the developed nations which have over 60 % market penetration.

Meanwhile, China has a rapidly growing market of over 130 million broadband users. The information revolution, powered by the Internet, has created a global expressway of content, information, knowledge and services.

Infotel was the only successful bidder in all of the 22 circles in the Broadband Wireless Access (“BWA”) auction conducted by DoT, Government of India.

It will empower India by providing easy and broad access to crucial social infrastructure, including UID, health, education and literacy services. It will transform rural India, especially the farm sector, through easy access to information on inputs, outputs, weather and other markets conditions.

It is estimated that for every one percent in broadband penetration, employment can go up by 4 to 6 per cent.

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