Sri Lanka’s 5G Launch Delayed Amidst High Costs and Uncertain Spectrum Auction

Sri Lanka’s 5G Launch Delayed Amidst High Costs and Uncertain Spectrum Auction

Colombo, Sri Lanka – February 14, 2024: The commercial launch of 5G technology in Sri Lanka faces uncertainty due to significant infrastructure costs and delays in the ongoing spectrum auction, according to a government source. While promising trials have been conducted and operators remain committed, widespread access may take longer than initially anticipated.

“Building the necessary infrastructure across the country requires significant investment,” said the source from the Technology Ministry. “The cost of 5G-compatible devices and data plans could initially be high for many users.”

5G promises faster data speeds, lower latency, and increased network capacity compared to current 4G standards. Its potential benefits include faster downloads, real-time applications like remote surgery, and seamless connectivity for billions of devices.

Globally, 5G adoption is growing rapidly, with over 200 operators in 80 countries offering services. However, Sri Lanka faces unique challenges.

The ongoing auction for 5G spectrum, crucial for network operation, has stalled, creating uncertainty for companies like Dialog Axiata and Mobitel who have conducted limited-scale trials in major cities.

Despite the challenges, the source believes successful implementation could boost Sri Lanka’s economy by attracting investments, fostering innovation, and increasing digital access.

With promising trials showcasing the potential, Sri Lanka’s 5G journey remains in its early stages. Overcoming infrastructure costs, securing spectrum, and ensuring affordable devices will be key to unlocking the technology’s full potential and bridging the digital divide.

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