Bharti Airtel Ltd, India’s biggest mobile phone networks operator, has agreed to pay 44.28 billion rupees ($664 million) to Videocon Telecommunications for radio frequencies in six service areas, trumping rival Idea Cellular’s smaller deal for the same spectrum in two service areas.
Bharti, India’s largest mobile phone operator, said on Thursday it will take up spectrum in the 1800 Mhz band from Videocon in Bihar, Haryana, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh (East and West) and Gujarat.
Idea Cellular Ltd had said earlier it had terminated its 33.10 billion rupees deal with Videocon to acquire the same spectrum in Gujarat and Uttar Pradesh (West) that was announced in November last year.
With smartphone sales booming telecom operators are ramping up infrastructure spending to expand 3G and 4G mobile broadband services across the country.
India has over 1 billion subscribers to mobile voice telephony services but only a third of those currently use mobile Internet services.