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Bharti Airtel enters into agreement with China Mobile

03 March 2015

Bharti Airtel, the country's largest telecom operator by users and revenue, has entered into an agreement with China Mobile to jointly work on Long Term Evolution (LTE) ecosystem and evolving mobile technology standards.

Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman, Bharti Airtel with Xi Guohua, chairman, China MobileThe move bring together the largest mobile operators from the world's two largest mobile markets, China and India.

The companies will also work towards shaping up a joint strategy for procurement of devices that include Mifi, smart phones, data cards, LTE Customer Premises Equipment and Universal Subscriber Identity Module (USIM).

USIM is a software application for Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS).

A Memorandum of Understanding was signed by Xi Guohua, chairman, China Mobile, and Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman, Bharti Airtel at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona today.

''India and China account for nearly third of all the mobile subscribers globally and this partnership will provide a major platform for development and deployment of 4G and future mobile technology standards as both countries enter a phase of explosive data led growth. We are confident that the exchange of best practices and innovations will help in delivering affordable high speed mobile internet to the masses and contribute to the Indian Government's 'Digital India' vision,'' Sunil Mittal said.

With both the countries on the cusp of large scale roll-out of high speed 4G data services, China Mobile and Airtel plan to share relevant network as well as product knowledge (specifically for new technologies like 4G), best practices and technical learnings.

These would enable delivery of world-class and affordable services to customers, the companies said in a statement.

Airtel and China Mobile will also work together for development of relevant technical standards and inter-operability testing.

Additionally, as founders of Global TD-LTE Initiative (GTI), China Mobile and Airtel will cooperate on standards and products development, and promoting a robust ecosystem to accelerate the commercialisation of TD-LTE and evolving 4.5G and 5G technologies.

Both companies will work together for sharing testing and validation practices (including network equipment, features and new releases) and also jointly conduct proof of concepts and trials.

China Mobile and Airtel will also hope to bring in cost efficiencies by driving synergies in their procurement strategies, among other collaborative efforts included in this MoU agreement.

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