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Maran welcomes RIL's GSM expansion plan

Maran welcomed Anil Ambani controlled RIL's plan to expand GSM service for which the co has sought spectrum in 1800 Mhz band.

india Updated: Jun 13, 2006 16:18 IST

Communication and IT Minister Dayanidhi Maran on Tuesday welcomed Anil Ambani controlled Reliance Communication's plan to expand GSM service for which the company has sought spectrum in 1800 Mhz band.

"I am happy that Reliance has also decided to expand into GSM services," he told world-wide GSM Association, which is here to hold it Board meeting.

Commending GSM handset manufacturers for bringing the mobile revolution mainly due to lower handset prices, Maran said CDMA based operators could not do so due to the royalty obligations of CDMA players towards the developer of the technology.

As per the trade practice, CDMA operators are mandated to give a royalty to US based Qualcom for usage of this technology, which is an added cost compared to no such obligation for GSM operators.

Minister is understood to have referred to this disparity among the two sets of service providers to indicate that GSM operators were in an advantageous position.

According to sources, this was also one of the reason for Reliance Communications to switch over to GSM technology from the existing CDMA. Reliance has a subscriber base of over 20 million and has pan India foot print.

The company recently approached Department of Telecom (DoT) seeking spectrum in 1800 Mhz (a frequency for GSM services) initially for Delhi and Mumbai. DoT is yet to take a decision on Reliance's application.