Importance of Broadband during Covid-19

Importance of Broadband during Covid-19

DUG Emphasizing Importance of Broadband in post Covid-19

28th May 2020, New Delhi: Digital Users Group of India (Affiliate to International Telecom Users Group) collaborated on World Telecommunication and Information Society Day-WTSID- by conducting webinar on “Importance of Broadband in post Covid-19”

Shri N Sivasailam, IAS, former Special Secretary, Telecom & Special Secretary (Logistics) Ministry of Commerce Govt. of India was Chief Guest. Shri S K Gupta, Secretary Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) was Guest of Honour. Shri P Balaji, Chief Regulatory and Corporate Affairs Officer, Vodafone Idea, Shri NK Mohapatra, CEO, ESSCI, and Shri Manoj Barara, Director, Pre-Sales, Nokia India were leading speakers. Shri Anil Jain, former CGM, BSNL moderated the webinar discussion. There were 165 professionals from 5 countries participating in the discussion.

Webinar recognized that broadband is new life line of economy and has seen data growth of 25% to 45% during the lockdown. Higher broadband width is being demanded by both individual (Work from Home) and also by institutional ones. Telecom Operators and infrastructure providers effetely played the role of Covid front line Warriors for maintaining the network and attending the faults speedily. Secretary TRAI recognized that the fault rate has gone down by 1% of BTS during Covid-19.

Shri Sivasailam said that ‘We also have issues related to institutions that are being created. We need to find an institutional solution. With the revival of BSNL and MTNL, they would be perfect to create the new infrastructure. The right of way should also be supported in an institutional manner’. He further said that the E and V bands are under discussions with the government for more than 5 years this is the opportune time to unleash the uses of the bands, regulator can play a significant role in its accessibility to use.

Webinar applauded telecom industry by bridging telecom digital divide in broadband. Fiber to the Home (FTTH) and 5G are the solutions to spread high speed broadband in urban and rural areas. Speakers also flagged that women are less privileged in accessing broadband than men. Today, the CSCs are having pan India footprint which can create a rural entrepreneurship. Clubbing CSCs with MNREGA funds can help to build fibre optic network in the rural areas effectively.

Webinar informed that people across the world are looking for new online solutions like in healthcare, agriculture, financial sector and education etc. With advent of AI, AR/VR, BOT which should provide solution in new reality of social distancing and hygiene.

Shri Gokul Tandon, Executive Chairman Virtual Soft and Cloud Connect, which summarising the webinar informed that solutions based on cloud technology are becoming new norms in office automation, especially for work from home.

Shri Anil Prakash, President Digital Group informed that the webinar recommendations will be submitted to the concerned regulators and policy makers, the webinar conclusion emerged with few streams of interest groups such as 5G, broadband QoS, manufacturing for Atmnirbhar Bharat, capacity building,  MSME for innovation, block chain, AI, AR/VR and BOT etc.

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