India admits to 'terrible job' in pushing broadband penetration

Summary:The National Optic Fiber Network rollout has been not so successful, according to the chief of the country's telecoms regulator, who called for the next government to take immediate action on spectrum availability.

India's rollout of its National Optic Fibre Network (NOFN) has been not so successful, according to Rahul Khullar, chairman of Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRAI).

“We have done a terrible job in broadband. We are nowhere near to meeting target of NOFN and unless it is done, Internet penetration cannot happen at the desired pace," said Khullar, according to BestMediaInfo. He was delivering his keynote address at the India Digital Summit of the Internet & Mobile Association of India.

With 80 percent of new Internet users getting onboard via 2G, Khullar noted access and speed would determine the penetration of smartphones and Internet. "Unless there is reasonable pricing of spectrum and making spectrum available, we will not succeed," he said.

Khullar also called for the next government would need to take immediate action on spectrum availability to have successful Internet penetration in India.

India ranked 122 globally for Internet penetration, with only 1.1 per every 100 residents having access to fixed broadband, according to a UN report released last September. This was below the world average of 9.9 per 100 inhabitants.

Topics: Telcos, India, Networking


Loves caption contests, leisurely strolls along supermarket aisles and watching How It's Made. Ryan has covered finance, politics, tech and sports for TV, radio and print. He is also co-author of best seller "Profit from the Panic". Ryan is an editor at ZDNet's Asia/Singapore office.

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