Airtel signs deal with Nokia to deploy RAN solution in 9 circles

Bharti Airtel today announced a multi-year deal with Nokia to deploy Nokia’s SRAN solution across 9 circles in India to enhance the network capacity of its networks, in particular 4G, and improve customer experience.
Financial details were not disclosed. Airtel earlier indicated that its Capex will be reduced during the current fiscal.

Airtel said it will deploy approximately 300,000 radio units across spectrum bands such as 900 MHz, 1800 MHz, 2100 MHz and 2300 MHz. Airtel will complete the roll out by 2022.

India will have 88 million 5G connections by 2023, according to the GSMA. Mobile data traffic rose 47 percent in 2019 in India, according to Nokia’s MBiT Index 2020.

Nokia’s SRAN solution will help Airtel to address this growing demand by adding network capacity and ensuring a superior quality of experience to its customers.

Nokia’s SRAN solution helps operators to manage their 2G, 3G and 4G networks from one platform reducing network complexity, increasing cost efficiencies and future-proofing investment. Nokia will be the sole provider of SRAN in these 9 telecom circles.

The deal will also include Nokia’s RAN equipment, including its AirScale Radio Access, AirScale BaseBand and NetAct OSS solution, which will help Airtel to monitor and manage its network effectively. Nokia Global Services will also play a crucial role in the installation, planning and deployment of the telecom network project, which will be executed via the cloud-based Nokia Delivery Platform.

Gopal Vittal, MD and CEO (India and South Asia) at Bharti Airtel, said: “Airtel has topped network performance charts in studies conducted by multiple global experts. We invest in emerging network technologies to provide better experience to our customers.”