Mumbai: On Saturday, prime minister Narendra Modi launched 5G services in India at the India Mobile Congress in New Delhi.
At the launch, while addressing the nation, Modi said that 5G technology will revolutionise the telecom sector and that it is a historic day for India in the twenty-first century. "The launch of 5G is a gift from the telecom industry to 130 crore Indians. It is a step toward a new era in the country, and is the beginning of infinite opportunities."
He emphasised how digital India's success is based on four pillars, including the cost of a device, digital connectivity, data costs, and the digital first approach.
Over the next few years, the services will gradually expand to cover the entire country. The fifth generation (5G) service, capable of supporting ultra-high-speed internet, is expected to open up new economic opportunities and societal benefits, serving as a transformative force in Indian society.
"Earlier, the cost of one GB of data was about Rs 300. It has come down to about Rs 10 per GB now. On average, a person in India consumes 14 GB per month. This would have cost about Rs 4,200 per month but costs Rs 125-150. It's the efforts of the government that led to this," he added.
Speaking further, Modi said, "With developments in technology and telecom, India will lead the industry's 4.0 revolution. This is not the decade of India, but the century of India."
At the event, Modi was accompanied by telecom minister Ashwini Vaishnaw, junior telecom minister Devusinh Chauhan, and Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani, Bharti Enterprises founder & chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal, and Aditya Birla Group chairman Kumar Manglam Birla.
After officially opening the show, Modi visited pavilions set up by several telecom carriers and technology providers to get a first-hand look at what 5G is capable of. He began at the Reliance Jio booths.
Reliance chairman Mukesh Ambani thanked the prime minister for inspiring the vision of a developed nation by 2047. "Every action and policy of the government is skillfully crafted to propel India towards that goal. Steps taken to fast-track India’s march into the 5G era provide compelling proof of our prime minister’s determination."
He narrated the possibilities of 5G in key areas like education, education, and climate change, etc. "Your leadership has raised India’s prestige, profile, and power globally like never before. In today’s fast-changing world, there will be no stopping a resurgent India from soaring to the top," Ambani concluded.
Bharti Enterprise chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal remarked that the launch of 5G is the beginning of a new era and since it is happening during "Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav," it makes it even more special. "With the efforts of the prime minister, this will usher in new energy in the country. We are fortunate to have a leader in the prime minister who understands technology very well and has deployed it to the development of the country in an unmatched manner," he noted.
Mittal further said that it will open up a sea of opportunities for people, especially in our rural areas. He recalled the PM's initiatives in the fields of infrastructure and technology from his Gujarat CM days. He said that during the pandemic, traffic shifted to villages and homes and the country's heartbeat did not stop even for a second. Credit for that goes to the digital vision. He also praised the audacity and achievement of the vision of "Make in India." "Along with "Digital India," the prime minister also took forward the "Start-up India" campaign and, soon enough, India started producing unicorns," Shri Mittal added. "With the advent of 5G, I’m sure that the country will add many more unicorns to the world."
Aditya Birla Group Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla called the advent of 5G a transformational event that proves India’s prowess on the global stage and reiterates the role of telecom technology as the bedrock of India's growth. He thanked Modi for his vision and leadership for a generational leap in technology that has resulted in India's making a mark on the global stage. He also thanked the PM for his inspirational role in supporting the telecom industry during the ongoing pandemic and for the path-breaking telecom reforms in the industry.
Birla said that the launch of 5G marks the beginning of an exciting journey for India. "We will see limitless potential for 5G development and use cases in the years to come," he added.
Reliance Jio connected a teacher from a school in Mumbai with students in three different locations in Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Odisha.
The Vodafone Idea test case demonstrated the safety of workers in an under-construction tunnel of the Delhi Metro through the creation of a 'Digital-Twin' of the tunnel on the dias.
In the Airtel demo, students from Dankaur, Uttar Pradesh, witnessed a lively and immersive educational experience to learn about the solar system with the help of virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR).