BSNL to sign MoU with Ericsson
27 November 2017 | Natalie Bannerman
Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), the Indian state-run operator, will sign a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Swedish vendor Ericsson next month.
According to Gizbot.com, the news comes as a continuation of BSNL’s previous announcement back in September, where the operator announced that it had entered into an agreement with Coriant. Under that agreement the two are to partner together on the operator’s strategy for architecture and services innovation surrounding 5G and IoT, including SDN, NFV, and mobile edge technologies. Similarly agreements were also signed with Nokia and ZTE.
Commenting on the news with Ericsson, Anupam Shrivastava chairman and managing director of BSNL, said: "Keeping with the roadmap for 5G and IOT, a MoU was signed with Nokia, ZTE, Coriant and now we'll be doing the same with Ericsson as well. Talks are already over and we'll be announcing the same within fortnight or so."
Adding that the deployment of 5G “is as early as one year and as late as three years" away.
So far Ericsson has signed a staggering 36 MoU with global telecoms operators ‘more than anyone else in the industry’ said the company in a statement. Recently Ericsson signed a MoU with Indian operator Bharti Airtel for 5G technology.
Speaking on the tying up of other device makers for its bundled 4G feature phone Shrivastava said: "We are talking to Lava and I think there is a MoU with them as well. The ball is in their court, we have already purposed an agreement to Lava but it appears as though their hands are full at this point in time. Maybe they have hit the capacity already."
Back in October, BSNL partnered with Lava, the Indian mobile device maker and its rival Micromax Informatics to offer low cost mobile handsets to its with bundled offers. The 4G feature phone from Micromax called the"BHARAT-1", is available at Rs 2200 ($34) and is fully equipped for 4G.
In March of this year, the Indian government announced its intention to merge BSNL with MTNL(Mahanagar Telephone Nigam Limited), its other state-owned operator. The two companies have come under strain from increasing competition in the Indian teleco sector and are reportedly recording losses.