Idea to launch 3G in Punjab in May, plans 4G in 8 states

Idea Cellular will launch 3G services in Punjab in May, in Delhi by about February, and launch 4G services in eight states after that.

Idea had got possession of its 3G spectrum in Punjab earlier this year after the courts forced the Department of Telecom to give hand over the spectrum to the operator.

Talking to investors today, the Idea CEO said Delhi 3G services would take some time as Idea would get the spectrum only by November end, and it would take a few months to do the final testing and roll out the services. It would, however, happen in this year itself, he added.

Idea also revealed that it would launch 4G services in eight circles where it won contiguous spectrum in February’s auction. The states are Kerala, Andhra Pradesh, Haryana, Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, North East and Punjab.

Among these, Idea would deploy 4G on 10 MHz in Kerala, and on at least 5 MHz in the other places.

In the auction, Idea won 9MHz of 4G/2G spectrum in the 1800 MHz band in Maharashtra, 8 MHz in Punjab, 7 MHz in Madhya Pradesh.

However, these launches would not be done in the current financial year, the company clarified.

Idea will continue to lack a high-speed data footprint in Mumbai, as it did not win either 4G or 3G airwaves in the city.