According to a research report by RNCOS,India’s rural areas has witnessed rapid increase in mobile market and its subscriber base during the past few years, largely due to the declining mobile tariffs and availability of low cost handsets in the country. Moreover, favorable government support, initiatives by major players, and increase in consumer awareness contributes to the development of the industry in these regions. It is expected that the subscribers’ base in these region will grow at a CAGR of 35% during 2011-12 – 2013-14.
The report has further analyzed the emerging trends, such as green telecommunication, solar powered phones, which are expected to prevail in near future says RNCOS.
Panchabuta has often opined that, there exists a huge opportunity for cleantech companies providing solutions in the cell phone tower space. Given the kind of rural coverage that these reports are talking about, the towers will have to be powered by hybrid solutions as most of these new towers will have little to no access to reliable grid power. This enables such towers to be established using solar powered hybrid in situ solutions.
Senior technical experts from the tower companies in discussion with Panchabuta have opined that the telecom industry is looking for complete hybrid solutions that can match the expectations of the telecom tower infrastructure players and their availability and service levels.
Further the energy costs is about 8% of the revenue generated for most operators and power and fuel contributes to about 25% of the total network cost.
Most tower companies have told us that they are looking at the ‘outsourced’ kind of model above where they are looking at a OPEX fee model from generated savings to create a win-win solution and help promote green and cleantech companies.
Just a few days back Panchabuta had noted that 400 telecom towers will be powered by solar panels. According to the report, the towers, which will get started in April in a Rs. 120-crore project under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Solar Mission (JNNSM) of the Ministry of New and Renewable Energy (MNRE), will kick off in Andhra Pradesh, Bihar and Uttar Pradesh and involve state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd and tower infrastructure firm GTL and Indus Towers.
Of the 400 towers, installed at R30 lakh each, 100 will be of BSNL. The ministry will subsidise about 30 % of the tower costs.
The hybrid solutions space in telecom towers, railways and the defence sectors provides entrepreneurs and cleantech companies with immense opportunities in the solar offgrid- renewable energy and cleantech space.