operators will be able to “insure” a friend in case of breakdowns, but this will significantly increase the cost of maintenance.
Because of the sanctions, Russia is facing an acute shortage of telecommunications equipment, so the Ministry of Digital Development, Telecommunications and Mass Media is developing a mechanism for sharing cellular networks by several operators. About this writes the publication “Izvestia”.
The Ministry of Digital Development confirmed to Izvestiya the development of such mechanisms and explained that the violation of supply chains caused a shortage of modern equipment for mobile communications. The cost of equipment and components has increased, so the cost of allocating LTE frequencies for operators has also increased, which ultimately threatens to increase prices for Russian subscribers. The conditions for the allocation were 4G coverage of settlements with a population of more than 1 thousand inhabitants and federal roads.
“We considered it important to support the appeal of the operators and postpone the fulfillment of the conditions for providing LTE frequencies for a year, until the situation with the supply of modern telecommunications equipment stabilizes,” the press service said. “The Ministry of Digital Development has fixed the possibility of joint fulfillment of these conditions by telecom operators. Now you can not build four base stations to cover the designated territories, but get by with one, agreeing on the conditions for its use.”
Officials want mobile operators to share networks in small towns and highways, sources close to the agency and several operators said. We are talking about technical roaming – if one company covers a distant village where competitors do not have coverage, then the latter can use the already launched equipment. According to another source, the scheme began to be worked out as early as 2021.
A person familiar with relevant officials and heads of several operating companies claims that due to sanctions, equipment deliveries are disrupted, and this threatens to interrupt communications in the event of a breakdown. Even a short-term lack of connection in a major city can lead to dire consequences, which can be mitigated by domestic roaming.
Purely technically, operators can simultaneously use the same base stations (RAN Sharing) or operate on foreign networks in virtual mode (MVNO), but in both cases they will have to spend more money on hardware and software. However, this approach will not make networks more reliable, because the equipment will not be able to duplicate each other.
Previously, Focus wrote how sanctions are killing communications in Russia. According to experts, the development of telecommunications in Russia is slowing down and starting to degrade, and the speed of mobile Internet has fallen by 0.6 Mb/sec.
Meanwhile, operators are forcing Russians to pay more for mobile communications. The companies are trying to compensate for the lack of equipment with a higher monthly fee and turning off unlimited tariffs in order to reduce the load.