Jio’s standalone 5G network to be compatible with all Xiaomi 5G phones
All Xiaomi phones that support 5G connectivity are now compatible with telecom operator Reliance Jio’s standalone 5G network, the two companies announced in a joint statement on Tuesday. The move comes after fellow China-based electronics brand, OnePlus, also announced a partnership with Reliance Jio on December 12 to support the latter’s 5G network on all its smartphones. Users of Xiaomi smartphones have already received a software update to enable 5G connectivity on their devices, the statement further added.
The move comes amid a phase of gradual 5G rollout across the country by Reliance Jio and fellow telecom operator, Bharti Airtel. The latter, which initially announced the rollout of 5G services with a non-standalone (NSA) network, has been adding new cities to its 5G network circles alongside Reliance Jio — while Vodafone Idea and Adani Data Networks, the other two companies involved during India’s 5G spectrum auction in July this year, have not made any network rollout announcements so far.
Airtel and Jio have fundamentally differed in terms of the core technology behind their 5G networks. While Jio has advertised ‘true’ 5G with its standalone (SA) 5G network, Airtel deploys an NSA network. In the latter, the core network infrastructure is shared with a 4G network, while the endpoints (or customer-end connectivity infrastructure) are upgraded to offer lower latency and greater bandwidth. However, SA 5G networks upgrade both the core and customer endpoints, thus offering better network capacity in terms of latency and bandwidth.
Airtel has stated since its initial rollout of the NSA 5G network that the operator already has the capacity in place to offer SA 5G. However, the telco has so far reserved its SA 5G offering to enterprises, starting network tests for private 5G networks for enterprises in November this year. According to reports, Airtel will also seek to offer SA 5G networks to users, when the industry demand for the same matures.
Smartphone brands are still in process of rolling out 5G network connectivity to their eligible devices, by enabling connections through a software update. On December 14, Apple enabled support for 5G connectivity in India with its iOS 16.2 update, thus supporting both Airtel and Jio’s 5G networks on iPhones in India.