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Airtel's 5G service reaches 3,000 cities, Jio 5G in 3089 urban areas

For easy transition from 4G to 5G, Airtel has tuned all the current Airtel 4G SIMS to be 5G compatible

Airtel 5G, Airtel

Subhayan Chakraborty New Delhi

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Bharti Airtel on Thursday announced the reach of its 5G network has now reached 3000 cities. This brings it closer to its rival Reliance Jio, whose 5G network is currently live in 3089 cities.

Both telecom service providers are in a race against time to spread their 5G network, massively investing in new tower and network infrastructure. Before this, Airtel had announced reaching the 500 cities mark on March 24. At that point, Jio was present in 408 cities.

"Bridging every town and key rural areas in India by September 2023 remains our commitment as we continue to add 30-40 cities/ towns every single day,” Randeep Sekhon, Chief Technology Officer at Bharti Airtel, said in a statement.

The earlier deadline for this had been the end of March 2024. Reliance Jio is looking at 100 million 5G customers by the end of FY24. It is aiming to cover all cities and 6,000 tehsils by that time.

The company stressed it is witnessing a rapid adoption of 5G amongst customers both in urban and rural India. Airtel has also launched unlimited 5G data for its customers by removing the capping on data usage across all existing plans.

In the last one year, Airtel has demonstrated the power of 5G with a host of powerful use cases that it expects will change the way customers lead their lives and do business. This includes India’s first live 5G network in Hyderabad, India's first private 5G network at the BOSCH facility in Bengaluru, partnering with Mahindra & Mahindra to make its Chakan manufacturing facility and India’s first 5G enabled auto manufacturing unit.

The company promises to deliver 20 to 30 times higher speed than today, coupled with better voice experience and super-fast call connect. It also stresses the Airtel 5G Plus network is also kinder on the environment because of its special power reduction solution.

For easy transition from 4G to 5G, Airtel has tuned all the current Airtel 4G SIMS to be 5G compatible. This means users do not have to buy a separate SIM to access high-speed data. The mode of user expansion is also different for both telecom operators.

Meanwhile, Jio usually sends out invites to users on the My Jio app. The company has also launched a special 5G welcome offer for all its users giving unlimited data at up to 1Gbps speeds, at no additional fee.

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First Published: Apr 27 2023 | 11:42 PM IST

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