The first step toward achieving this goal would be to bid for and acquire the available BWA spectrum. Several MNOs have already registered their interest as bidders, including Aircel, Bharti Airtel, Idea, Reliance, Tata, and Vodafone. The growing maturity of LTE as a viable air interface standard that is backward-compatible and also supports both TDD and FDD modes means that the 20MHz TDD blocks of BWA spectrum are no longer an exclusive zone for WiMAX, but are also available as 3G expansion bands. In short, we expect and encourage aggressive bidding for the available BWA spectrum, which could present a scenario of an incumbent 2G operator winning 5MHz of 3G spectrum and also 20MHz of BWA spectrum. Regardless of the technology chosen for deployment, this is a worthwhile investment as the alternative is a race to the bottom and eventual exit from the market.
The writer is an Ovum analyst.
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