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Airtel 4G coming to Delhi and Mumbai

Qualcomm has authorised Airtel to roll out 4G services in four of its circles including Delhi and Mumbai.

As The Mobile Indian has reported earlier, Airtel will roll out 4G services in Delhi and Mumbai in partnership with Qualcomm. The GSM service provider has inked a deal with the Qualcomm to roll out 4G services on its behalf.

Qualcomm had bagged BWA (Broadband Wireless Access)spectrum or 4G licenses for Delhi, Mumbai, Haryana and Kerala. Now it has signed an agreement with Bharti Airtel under which it has authorised the teleco to operate its 4G services in the four circles till 2014, when Bharti plans to take full control of the BWA arm of Qualcomm.

Bharti has reportedly purchased 49 percent stake in Qualcomm’s broadband wireless access venture. The deal involved Bharti buying a 26% stake equally held by Global Holding Corporation and Tulip Telecom apart from subscribing to fresh equity.

Bharti already has BWA licenses in four circles – Kolkata, Karnataka, Punjab and Maharashtra – and 3G licenses in thirteen circles in India. With this agreement, Bharti has secured a nation-wide broadband leadership through a combination of 4G and 3G, with its own networks in 18 circles. Airtel has already launched its 4G services in Kolkata and Karnataka circles.

Commenting on the partnership Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman and managing director, Bharti Airtel said, “We are delighted to partner with Qualcomm, who shares our commitment to the government’s agenda of broadband for all. This partnership will combine the strength of Bharti’s national telecom footprint and Qualcomm’s technological leadership in the LTE TDD space. With a broadband ready network across India, Bharti is well positioned to lead the next phase of Indian’s telecom revolution.”

Qualcomm expects to provide technical assistance to Bharti in connection with network architecture and optimisation, infrastructure and device testing, as well as continuing to develop and support the underlying technology and the LTE TDD ecosystem.

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