In order to facilitate the smooth roll-out of machine-to-machine (M2M) communications utilising licence exempt airwaves, sectoral regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) has recommended de-licensing of a chunk of spectrum in a few bands.
Important recommendations made:
Allocation of spectrum: Spectrum allocation should be technology and service neutral and no separate spectrum band should be allocated exclusively for M2M services. However, in order to facilitate the smooth rollout of M2M services utilising license exempt spectrum, 1 MHz of spectrum at 868 MHz (867-868) and a chunk of 6 MHz of spectrum at 915-935 MHz is recommended to be de-licensed. Delicensng the V-band (57-64 GHz) on various occasions may be done on priority.
Composition of M2M apex body: Regulatory authorities whose sector would get impacted by M2M communications like Trai, Central Drugs Standard Control Organization, National Highways Authority of India, Inland Waterways Authority of India, Central Electricity Regulatory Commission etc and Ministry of Law and Justice should be members in M2M apex body formed by Department of Telecommunications (DoT).
Registration: M2M service providers should register with DoT and all access service providers and unified license holders using licenced spectrum shall be allowed to provide M2M services. All unified license virtual network operators shall be accordingly be allowed to provide M2M connectivity and DoT may amend the license condition for the same.
What is M2M?
M2M is the basis for automated information exchange between machines and can impact various industry verticals like smart city, smart grid, smart water, smart transportation, smart health etc. The government has also recognized the potential of M2M and emphasized the same in National Telecom Policy 2012.