Led by Reliance Jio, the mega 5G spectrum auction ended on Monday after receiving record bids worth over Rs 1.5 lakh crore in 40 rounds spanning across seven days.
5G airwaves worth Rs 1,50,173 crore has been sold so far and the final tally is being prepared by the government, according to sources.
Day six of the 5G spectrum auction on Sunday saw an incremental increase in the bidding figure after 37 rounds, with bids worth Rs 1,50,130 crore.
According to industry analysts, Reliance Jio has placed bids for more than Rs 84,500 crore, while Airtel’s bids are worth more than Rs 46,500 crore.
Vodafone Idea has placed bids of around Rs 18,500 crore, while a unit of Adani Enterprises has bids of around Rs 5,000 crore.
Jio and Airtel were fiercely engaged in intense bidding in Uttar Pradesh East circle for the 1800MHz band.
Devroop Dhar, Co-founder and board member, Primus Partners, said the auction stands testimony to the fact that the industry is willing and ready to expand further than ever before.
“That is also the reason behind the key players finally going for the 700MHz bands. The 40 per cent cut down of the bands for Rs 3,927 crore per unit acted as an aid for the bidders,” Dhar said.
The expansive 700MHz band is built to cover densely populated regions such as India, which will truly benefit from this band and receive expansive 5G coverage.
“As the bidding has been much higher than the previous auctions, the amount generated will add positively to the revenue and will help the government in the future while setting up the 5G infrastructure,” Dhar added.
While Reliance Jio may have an upper hand in terms of bundled handsets and their investments, other industry players also have an opportunity to compete in the industry as according to studies, Indian consumers claim to be willing to pay 50 per cent more for 5G-bundled plans.
“Hence, the companies need to find an incentive to get their customers upgrade to 5G devices,” Dhar said.
IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw expects 5G rollout by October this year.