In an effort to build the fastest and deepest 5G telecom network and offer high-speed internet, Reliance Jio has installed close to 1 lakh telecom towers, 5 times more than its nearest competition Airtel, according to news agency PTI.
Citing the latest daily status report from the Department of Telecommunications (DoT) National EMF Portal, the report said that Jio has installed 99,897 BTS (base transceiver station) across 2 frequencies it owns (700 MHz and 3,500 MHz) compared to 22,219 BTS of Bharti Airtel.
Adding to this Jio has 3 cell sites at every base station while Airtel has 2, the report added. More towers and cell sites translate into faster speed.
The report also cites an Ookla report which says that Jio’s top median speed is 506 Mbps (megabytes per second) as compared to 268 Mbps of Airtel.
“5G has been in place in India for over four months and already it’s having a tremendous impact on the state of mobile in the country. Speedtest Intelligence data shows that median download speeds across India increased by 115 per cent since before the 5G launch, from a 13.87 Mbps median download speed in September 2022 to 29.85 Mbps in January 2023,” Ookla said in the report.
According to the report, the majority of telecom circles have seen an increase in 5G performance, with Kolkata recording the fastest median 5G download rates in January 2023 at over 500 Mbps.
“Jio experienced a top median 5G download speed of 506.25 Mbps in Kolkata, while Airtel of 268.89 Mbps in Delhi,” it said.
India is the second-largest Internet market in the world, just behind China, with over 500 million users. In October 2022, 5G telecom services were introduced. Airtel and Jio, both have ambitious targets in terms of the 5G network rollout.
“From 5G networks’ inception, 5G availability across 5G-capable devices has steadily increased, reaching 8.0 per cent for Airtel and 5.1 per cent for Jio,” Ookla said.
“Jio’s $25 billion investment seems to be paying off. In January 2023 Jio achieved median 5G download speeds above 400 Mbps across ten telecom circles,” Ookla said.
In comparison, “Airtel’s 5G early adopters experienced speeds ranging from a 78.13 Mbps median download speed in Kolkata to 268.89 Mbps in Delhi,” it added.