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Airtel signs 7,636 crore multi-year deal with Nokia to get ready for the 5G era

Airtel says the partnership will help the company lay the foundation for 5G services in the future.

Airtel and Nokia sign multi-year deal
Airtel and Nokia sign multi-year deal (REUTERS)

Bharti Airtel on Tuesday announced signing multi-year agreement with Nokia. As per the deal that is valued at 7,636 core, Airtel will deploy Nokia's SRAN solutions in as many as 9 circles in the country. The move will help Airtel ramp up its network capacity especially for the 4G networks.

The partnership will also help the telecom operator lay the foundation for providing 5G services in the future. Airtel will deploy Nokia's 300,000 radio network units in these nine circles. This also covers a variety of bands including 900 Mhz, 1800 Mhz, 2100 Mhz and 2300 Mhz. The deployment is expected to be completed by 2022.

Nokia will be Airtel's exclusive SRAN providers in the nine circles. The SRAN solution is said to help operators manage their existing radios including 2G, 3G, and 4G.

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According to Airtel, the deal also covers Nokia's RAN equipment, including its AirScale Radio Access, AirScale BaseBand and NetAct OSS solution which will help the operator better manage and monitor the network.

"This is an important agreement for the future of connectivity in one of the world's largest telecoms markets and solidifies our position in India. We have worked closely with Bharti Airtel for many years and are delighted to extend this long-standing partnership further. This project will enhance their current networks and deliver best-in-class connectivity to Airtel customers but also lay the foundations for 5G services in the future," said Nokia Chief Executive Rajeev Suri in a release.

The latest deal comes shortly after the report that Airtel is looking to improve its 4G footprints in rural areas of the country. The company has teamed up with Ceragon for this purpose, reported ET Telecom.