SPOTLIGHT: How will India get broadband?

India is presenting an interesting case study on broadband technology adoption. The country's 1.1 billion inhabitants only have one broadband connection for every 400 people.

A recent Heavy Reading conference discussed the problems carriers are having changing the state of the broadband marketplace, and many universal challenges were brought to light. Delegates to the conference from carriers complained that government regulation makes it nearly impossible to create new broadband connections, as 70 percent of cost is tied up in government permit expenses, creating a scenario complete with high end-user cost and miniscule profit margin potential.

This impasse has carriers looking at wireless broadband solutions such as WiMAX and 3G as the means to access the growing market. India is expected to have more than 300 million mobile customers by year's end, and efficient rollouts of wireless broadband technology could make broadband affordable enough to catch on in India's new middle class.

India should provide a great model what to do and (more importantly) what not to do in rolling out broadband access to developing nations, as broadband players in highly competitive markets like N.A. and Europe seek global profit opportunities in developing markets. 

For more:
- Puzzling out India at Light Reading. Blog.

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