A Blow to India's 3G Vanguard

9:50 AM -- India's Department of Telecommunications has sent notices to Reliance Communications Ltd. and Tata Teleservices Ltd. to withdraw some 3G services as they violate security rules, according to The Economic Times.

Reliance launched its 3G services this week, while Tata Teleservices, via its Tata Docomo operation, was the first private operator to get into the 3G market when it launched last month. Bharti Airtel Ltd. (Mumbai: BHARTIARTL), which is set to launch its 3G services soon, is also believed to have been contacted about what it cannot offer. (See Bharti Gets a Makeover Before 3G Launch, Bharti Plans Pan-India 3G Launch This Year , Reliance Com Joins India's 3G Club, and India's Tata Ready for 3G Launch.)

The services affected by the notices are those that are deemed difficult to monitor in real time, including video calls, a service that Tata Docomo had launched, but which it has now withdrawn.

India's security agencies had earlier noted that video calls and some other 3G services cannot be intercepted with existing monitoring infrastructure.

Indian operators paid a high price for the spectrum at the auction earlier this year, so not being able to launch video calling, believed by many here to potentially be one of the popular initial 3G applications, is a big setback for the likes of Tata Docomo, which was expecting to be able to gain from its first-mover advantage. (See India's 3G Auction Ends, Raises $14.6B)

— Gagandeep Kaur, India Editor, Light Reading

digits 12/5/2012 | 4:15:39 PM
re: A Blow to India's 3G Vanguard

Daft, or unfair?

Re restrictions on certain services -- It seems that BSNL and MTNL's services are accessible by the security agencies...

mgcarley 12/5/2012 | 4:15:39 PM
re: A Blow to India's 3G Vanguard

MTNL and BSNL, the 2 government operators, have had video calling over 3G since 2008 (being government operators, they got about 2-years head start on private players by being allowed to offer 3G services whilst the 3G spectrum bidding process was being undertaken by the private operators).

As a foreigner operating a company in India, all I can say is that this move is nothing less than daft.


mgcarley 12/5/2012 | 4:15:38 PM
re: A Blow to India's 3G Vanguard


But under the terms of the various licenses from the DoT, it is required that any company acquiring a license (whether it is an ISP, phone, or other license) set up an office on the premises (minimum size 10sqft) complete with Air Conditioning, Telephones, Computers and the facility for a direct, unrestricted connection to the network to monitor traffic, as well as sufficient capacity for the appropriate equipment to be installed by the security agencies.

See Page 12 - http://dot.gov.in/internet%20s...






















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