Reliance Industries Chairman says 300 million mobile subscribers are still trapped in 2G era
While pitching for an early rollout of 5G services, Reliance Industries Chairman Mukesh Ambani on Tuesday called for urgent policy measures to ensure access to affordable smartphones for 300 million mobile subscribers “trapped in the 2G era”.
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“As many as 300 million mobile subscribers in India are still trapped in the 2G era. Urgent policy steps are needed to ensure that these underprivileged people have an affordable smartphone, so that they too can benefit from Direct Benefit Transfer into their bank accounts and actively participate in the digital economy,” Mr. Ambani said, speaking at the inaugural session of India Mobile Congress 2020.
He added that while India is among the best digitally connected nations in the world, to maintain this lead, policy steps are needed to accelerate early rollout of 5G and to make it affordable and available everywhere.
“Jio will pioneer the 5G revolution in India in the second half of 2021. It will be powered by indigenously developed network, hardware and technology components,” Mr. Ambani said.
Pointing out that Jio Platforms has built world-class capabilities in artificial intelligence, cloud computing, big data, machine learning, internet of things and blockchain, he said the company is creating compelling home-grown solutions in education, healthcare, agriculture, infrastructure, financial services and new commerce.
“Each of these solutions, once proven in India, will be offered to the rest of the world to address global challenges,” he said, adding that the demand for digital hardware will grow enormously and India cannot rely on large-scale imports in this area of critical national need.
“I clearly foresee India becoming a major hub for the state-of-the-art semiconductor industry. When all the stakeholders work together, we can surely ensure that India’s success in hardware will match our success in software,” Mr. Ambani said.
He also expressed confidence that the pandemic will be behind us soon in 2021 and the Indian economy will not only bounce back, but will also grow with unprecedented acceleration.
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