Bharti Airtel To Buy 4G Licences From Qualcomm
Bharti Airtel, the first company to bring 4G services in India has filed an agreement with US chipmaker Qualcomm to buy its 4G licences for about Rs 60 billion. This acquisition will soon allow the firm to launch 4G services in the leading Indian markets like Delhi and Mumbai.
According to sources, this deal is likely to be closed by June and will be accompanied by technology agreements between Qualcomm and Bharti. Fourth-generation (4G) services offer users Internet access at three times the speed of 3G and require broadband airwaves.
In 2010, Qualcomm had won airwaves in four regionsâ€”-Mumbai, Delhi, Haryana and Kolkata in the broadband wireless auction for Rs 49 billion. In 2011, it had begun talks to sell its 74 per cent stake in its Indian joint venture to Bharti Airtel. But these went on hold when the telecom department cancelled the permits of US chipmakers mobile broadband. It stated that the company had not applied for the licences within three months of the auction.