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Narendra Modi launches submarine cable connectivity to Andaman & Nicobar Islands

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NEW DELHI: Prime Minister Narendra Modi has launched and dedicated to the nation, the submarine Optical Fibre Cable (OFC) connecting Andaman &Nicobar Islands to the mainland through video conferencing. The foundation stone for this project was laid by the PM on 30th December 2018 at Port Blair.

Prime Minister  Modi said the connectivity would now enable endless opportunities in the islands. He said the laying of the 2300 KMs submarine cable and completing it before the set target is very praise worthy.

The Prime Minister said that the service had begun today on a major chunk of the islands from Chennai to Port Blair, Port Blair to Little Andaman and Port Blair to Swaraj Island.

The Prime Minister admired the laying of cables for about 2300 kilometers under the sea as surveying in the deep sea, maintaining the quality of the cable and laying of the cable with specialised vessels is not an easy task.

The project also had to overcome challenges such as high waves, storms and monsoons and the tough times owing to Corona Pandemic.

The Prime Minister said the Andaman & Nicobar Islands felt the need for years but no steps were taken to fulfil it. Shri Modi expressed his happiness for being able to deliver the project notwithstanding such major challenges.The Prime Minister said providing better and cheap connectivity to the people of Andaman & Nicobar Islands is the responsibility of the country. He congratulated all those who were associated with the project. Shri Modi said the Submarine Cable is one such effort to prove that A & N Islands are not far away from Delhi and from the Hearts of the Mainland.

Ease of Living to every Citizen

Shri Modi said that the Government is committed to provide modern facilities to every citizen and every sector so that there can be a better ease of living. He said this Optical Fibre Project which links A&N Islands with the rest of the country is an example of the commitment of the Government towards ease of living. He said the Government is committed to the speedy development of national security linked border areas and island states.

Increase Opportunities through Digital India

The Prime Minister said the Submarine Cable will help A&N in getting cheaper & better connectivity and all the benefits of Digital India, especially in improving online education, tele-medicine, banking system, online trading and in boosting tourism.PM said that the Indian Ocean has been the center of India’s trade and strategic prowess for thousands of years and that Andaman & Nicobar is an important centre for India’s Economic-Strategic Cooperation.He said all the Islands of India would be playing an important role under India’s new trade strategy for  Indo-Pacific region.

Modi said under the Act-East policy, the role of Andaman and Nicobar in India’s strong relations with East Asian countries and other countries connected to the sea is very high and is going to increase. He said that the Island Development Agency was formed 3 years ago to strengthen its role. He said that the projects which were not completed in Andaman and Nicobar for years, are now rapidly getting completed.

High Impact Projects & Better Land, Air and Water Ways

PM said that High Impact Projects are being expanded in 12 islands of Andaman and Nicobar. Apart from providing for better internet & mobile connectivity, he said the effort is to further improve physical connectivity through road, air and water.

The Prime Minister referred to the work on two major bridges and the NH-4 in order to improve the road connectivity of North and Middle Andaman.He said the Port Blair Airport is being enhanced to handle a Capacity of 1200 passengers.Along with this the airports are ready for operations in Diglipur, Car Nicobar and Campbell – Bay.

Modi said the Passenger Terminal in SwarajDweep, Shaheed Dweep and Long Island along with Water Aerodrom Infrastructure like Floating Jetty will be ready in the coming months.He said that the 4 Ships being built at Kochi Shipyard shall be delivered soon to improve the Water connectivity between the islands and the mainland.

Port Led Development

He said Andaman & Nicobar will be developed as an hub of Port Led Development as it is at a Competitive Distance from many ports of the World.Prime Minister said a country which has better network of ports and their connectivity will be able to provide a boost to trade in the 21st Century.

He said that today, when India is moving forward with the resolve of self-sufficiency and is establishing itself as an important player in the Global Supply and Value Chain, it is very important to strengthen our network of Waterways and our Ports.

Modi said that the legal bottlenecks in the development of Port Infrastructure are also being removed continuously.

International Maritime Trade

PM said that the Government’s focus is also on promoting Ease of Business in the sea and simplifying Maritime Logistics. He referred to the speedy construction of the deep draft inner harbor and the proposal to construct Trans-Shipment Port in Great Nicobar at an estimated cost of about Rs 10 thousand crores.

Modi said this would enable big ships to anchor and would increase India’s share in maritime trade, along with new employment opportunities.

He said that the blue economy like Fisheries, Aquaculture and Sea-Weed farming in the island will accelerate in commensurate with the modern infrastructure being developed in Andaman and Nicobar. He wished that the efforts of the Government will give Andaman and Nicobar, not only new facilities but also as a prominent place on the World Tourist Map.

Ravi Shankar Prasad, Union Minster for Electronics & Information Technology, Communications and Law & Justice; Sanjay Dhotre, Minister of State for Electronics and IT, Communications and HRD; Admiral D K Joshi, Lieutenant Governor, A&N Islands, Anshu Prakash, Secretary, Department of Telecommunications also joined the inaugural event virtually.

Prasad spoke about the importance of the submarine Optical Fiber Cable Project for the local people. He said that the 2300Km submarine Optical Fiber Cable will not only open the pool of opportunities for those living in A&N islands but will also strengthen the base for two dreams of Prime Minister including Digital India and Aatmanirbhar Bharat.

He also mentioned that work of laying under sea cable has been executed by BSNL in a record time of less than 24 months adding that the 4G mobile services will get a big boost on these islands due to OFC connectivity. This will boost Digital Services like Tele-education, Tele- Health, e-Governance Services and tourism on the islands.

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Airtel launches ‘Airtel IQ Video’

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NEW DELHI: Bharti Airtel today announced the launch of its Video Platform as a Service (CPaaS) – ‘Airtel IQ Video’. The solution has been developed by Airtel’s in-house engineering teams.

By leveraging Airtel’s resilient cloud, and cutting edge video technologies, Airtel IQ Video allows businesses to build world-class video streaming products for large and small screens with minimal investment in infrastructure and technology. Airtel IQ Video is an end-to-end managed solution that brings convenience along with cost benefits. It encompasses a variety of features ranging from app development, content hosting, curation and lifecycle management to search and discovery, analytics and monetisation models (advertising, subscriptions, transactions).

Take the example of Raj TV, who have used Airtel IQ Video to take the OTT route to serve increasingly digitally savvy consumers. Says M Raajhendhran, Managing Director at Raj Television Network “We had a content library of over 30,000 hours with some of the best Tamil, Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam films. But most of this content was on tapes/analog formats and audiences also want to access these through OTT. Using Airtel IQ Video, we have been able to digitize our content, host it on Airtel’s cloud platforms and offer it to audiences both in India and across the global through our own OTT app. Importantly, we have been able to achieve this at the fraction of the cost in very quick time with access to the best technology that has ensured the user experience is excellent. We look forward to deeping our relationship with Airtel.”

According to RBSA Advisors, India’s video OTT market is expected to touch USD 12.5 billion by 2030, from USD 1.5 billion, currently. The report also highlighted that the next wave of growth in the OTT landscape will come from tier II, III and IV cities and regional languages at the centre of this growth story. Keeping these changing trends in sight, existing regional OTTs are looking to scale their technology platforms to accommodate the rising number of users. Traditional content providers such as regional TV broadcasters are looking to digitize their content libraries through OTT applications.

Adarsh Nair, Chief Product Officer, Bharti Airtel said: “Airtel IQ Video brings an easy-to-use platform that can enable anyone to quickly build and scale their business in video streaming. This will encourage enterprises to focus on content while Airtel IQ Video anchors the end-to-end technology ensuring a great viewing experience for customers. With Airtel IQ Video, we expect to see more content startups and traditional content companies coming online and directly engaging with consumers digitally.”

During the beta phase, Airtel IQ Video has also been deployed by Eros Now and CG Telecom of Nepal. Airtel is expecting to onboard 50+ brands on the platform in coming year as interest from market has been high.

Niravana Chaudhary, Managing Director, CG Group shares, “We have aspirations to launch a cutting edge IPTV and Video OTT platform as part of our telco offering in Nepal. Airtel’s proven execution in video based offerings with Airtel Xstream and keen understanding of a telecom company paved the way for our partnership. Airtel IQ Video will power both our Video OTT app and IPTV, bringing seamless streaming to our customers in Nepal on devices of their choice.”

Ali Hussein, CEO, Eros Now, says, “We have cherished our partnership with Airtel over the years and are now excited about our technology collaboration. Their robust infrastructure and extensive network coverage has been helping us deliver blockbuster content seamlessly to the end consumers. Airtel’s latest ‘Airtel IQ Video’ platform is an innovative offering that is built to scale and can assist Eros Now in reinforcing its value proposition to the rapidly expanding video subscriber base.”

Airtel IQ, a cloud-based omni-channel communications platform, enables brands to deepen engagement with customers through timely and secure communication. Airtel IQ eliminates the need for multiple communication platforms for different channels. With just a slice of code, businesses can embed communication services such as Voice, SMS, IVR, Video in their applications and digital properties across desktop and mobile, all through a unified platform.

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Nokia selected by T-2 Slovenia in five-year 5G deal as sole supplier

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NEW DELHI: Nokia today announced that it has been selected as the sole vendor by Slovenia’s T-2 in a five-year deal to supply equipment from its comprehensive AirScale 5G portfolio.

The new deal will see Nokia upgrade T-2’s existing Single RAN radio footprint as well as introduce enhanced 5G new radio (NR) services. The project is expected to deliver ultra-fast, low-latency, and high-capacity 5G connectivity delivering superior coverage to businesses and consumers alike.

Nokia will provide equipment from its latest AirScale radio portfolio, all powered by Nokia’s energy-efficient ReefShark System-on-Chip technology. This includes 5G RAN, AirScale base stations, and Nokia AirScale radio access products including its Single RAN portfolio for both indoor and outdoor coverage. These solutions will offer faster speeds and wider mobile coverage. Nokia will also provide digital design and deployment for a faster time to market as well as optimization and technical support services.

T-2 is one of the largest telecommunications providers in Slovenia and recently secured frequencies in the 2100 MHz and 2300 MHz bands at Slovenia’s spectrum auction. Nokia is a long-standing provider and key strategic supplier to T-2.

Jozef Zrimsek, CTO at T-2, said: “This important project will enhance the delivery of compelling new 5G services and use cases to our subscribers across the country. We are excited to expand our partnership with Nokia.”

Tommi Uitto, President of Mobile Networks at Nokia, said: “We are proud to expand our partnership with T-2 into the 5G era as their sole vendor. Our latest AirScale portfolio will help support T-2’s ambitious 5G roll-out plans and deliver incredible connectivity experiences across the country.”

 

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Private sector to play prominent role leveraging technologies like 5G and Satellite communication

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NEW DELHI: Private sector to play prominent role leveraging technologies like 5G and Satellite communication to help in reaching the hinterland more effectively and efficiently said Alok Chaturvedi, CEO, CSC Wi-Fi Choupal Service India, MeiTY.

He mentioned that today there are about 3.76 lakh CSC centres in the country covering all Gram Panchayats and important villages run by a village level entrepreneur, a change agent, who could be an individual or an organization promoting rural entrepreneurship and rural employment opportunities. He opined, government has to ensure that quality broadband internet services are availing to the residents in Gram Panchayats and Villages.

Umang Das, Summit Chairman and Chairman, Foreign Investors India Forum in his address said that Govt and the private sector to weave an unpreceded wave of digitisation that will drive Industry 4.0 and significantly improve the day-to-day lives of a billion Indians. The telecom sector is at of the cusp of transformation and Indian tech companies can attract global investors who’ve burnt their hands in Chinese tech companies added by Mr Das.

Peeyush Vaish, Partner & Telecom Leader, Deloitte India in theme introduction mentioned that Convergence amongst the telecom ecosystem with the power of technology will pave the way for bridging the urban−rural divide across sectors, including banking, healthcare and education.

CII -Deloitte paper launched, called “Digital Reset – Touching a billion Indians” aptly highlights the relevance of technological advancements like 5G technology that are poised to act as a key enabler and contributor to the success of the enterprise business and easing the lives of the common man.

In his address, Amit Marwah, Head of Marketing and Corporate Affairs, Nokia India said, 5G will be a huge leap towards a connected digital society adding value beyond connectivity to economy as well as deliver social impact. He also said that the government, regulators and the telecom industry in India need to collaborate on initiatives that will facilitate faster 5G roll-out and adoption, to accelerate socio-economic growth.

Speaking at the conference, P Balaji Summit Co-Chairman and Chief Regulatory & Corporate Affairs Officer, Vodafone India said that with 5G on the anvil, IoT and AI will unleash the next digital revolution helping India meet our trillion dollar digital economy goal in the coming years.

“The telecom sector and our network warriors have catalysed the economy in the last 18 months and has fast-tracked digital adoption at an unprecedented scale, both at individual and organizational level and provided a robust platform for the digital society enabling Healthcare, Education, e-Commerce, Fintech and Manufacturing to deliver services to consumers and enterprises highlighted by Balaji.

Space open for Industry further would excite everyone for the future growth translate the potential of IoT into tangible benefits on the ground said by Dr Rishi M Bhatnagar, President, Aeries communications India in his address. IoT projects through solutions would meet various end uses such as improving supply chain efficiency, enhancing customer experience, tracking and monitoring assets, improving logistics and empowering smart cities through a bouquet of solutions added by Dr Bhatnagar.

Peeyush Vaish, Partner & Telecom Leader, Deloitte India in theme introduction mentioned that “ Convergence amongst the telecom ecosystem with the power of technology will pave the way for bridging the urban−rural divide across sectors, including banking, healthcare, and education. CII-Deloitte paper report launched, called “Digital Reset – Touching a billion Indians” aptly highlights the relevance of technological advancements like 5G technology that are poised to act as a key enabler and contributor to the success of the enterprise business and easing the lives of the common man.

As the industry transcends from ‘digital-first’ to ‘digital-throughout’, technology will play a critical role in creating a ubiquitous presence amongst consumers and diversify revenue streams for enterprises moving “beyond connectivity” built strategically with the strong support and commitment from the GOI towards sustainable growth of the nation”. said by Mr Vaish.

The virtual summit aimed to provide a platform for telecom players to discuss the relevance of technological advancements like 5G technology that are poised to act as a key enabler and contributor to the success of the enterprise. The conference saw speakers from Quadgen, Ericsson,COAI, Bharti Airtel and others.The summit was attended by over 175 participants

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