Airtel-Alphabet laser tech deal faces challenges
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6 months ago 02:40:53pm Television

Airtel-Alphabet laser tech deal faces challenges

New Delhi, 11-December-2023, By IBW Team


Bharti Airtel‘s plans to use Google parent Alphabet’s laser internet technology, Taara, to support its 4G and 5G operations in India has hit an air pocket.

The Sunil Mittal-led telecom operator is not convinced about the effectiveness of using Taara as a wireless backhaul technology commercially in India, two people aware of the matter said.

This is because ongoing field trials have indicated that the tech, which uses light beams to deliver fast broadband, may not work efficiently in inclement weather in rural and hard-to-reach places, Economic Times reported.

That could affect the mobile broadband experience for 4G/5G users. Airtel insiders believe more extensive joint field trials are required to assess the technical and commercial viability of the tech.

Taara’s laser Internet technology was developed at Alphabet’s California innovation lab, called X. “We are not able to comment on Airtel’s deployment of Taara’s technology,” an X spokeswoman wrote in response to ET’s queries.

An Airtel spokesperson told ET: “Project Taara is currently being tested jointly with Alphabet in multiple geographies across different weather cycles to assess feasibility in offering connectivity to fiber-dark areas.”

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