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Reliance Jio in Talks with Tesla to Build Private 5G Network

Unleashing the Power of 5G, Jio's Offer to Tesla for Private Network Sparks Innovation

23 May 2023


Kunal Tyagi

India produced 3X more unicorns than China in 2022.png
  • Reliance Jio is in talks with Tesla to build a private 5G network for Tesla's manufacturing plant in India.

  • Jio's offer is contingent upon Tesla finalizing its plans for the manufacturing unit in India.

  • Private networks offer benefits such as enhanced network control and support for Industry 4.0 advancements in manufacturing.

Reliance Jio, led by Mukesh Ambani, is reportedly engaged in discussions with Tesla to establish a private 5G network for the electric vehicle manufacturer's upcoming manufacturing plant in India. These talks have emerged as Tesla explores plans for setting up its first manufacturing base in the country. The proposed private network would not only enable high-speed operations within the manufacturing plant but also support connected car solutions and automated production processes.

Jio is in preliminary talks with Tesla regarding the setup of a private 5G network. However, any further developments in this regard are expected to occur once Tesla finalizes its plans for the manufacturing unit in India. Jio has also extended its offer to other industries such as automobile, healthcare, and manufacturing, aiming to build and manage private networks for these firms. This approach would enable these industries to leverage the benefits of 5G, including high data speeds and increased data capacity.

Jio is not the first telecom operator to pursue opportunities in establishing private 5G networks. In December 2022, Jio's competitor Airtel partnered with Tech Mahindra to deploy 5G for the enterprise solution at Mahindra and Mahindra's Chakan facility, making it the first 5G-enabled auto manufacturing unit in India. With Jio now in discussions with Tesla, the competition among telecom operators and companies to implement private networks to enhance their operations is expected to intensify.

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Jio's plans with Tesla hinge on the confirmation of Tesla's intentions to establish a manufacturing unit in India. Recent reports have revealed that Tesla officials visited India to discuss manufacturing plans and incentives with Indian officials. Until Tesla finalizes its decision, Jio's offer to build a captive private network for the manufacturing plant remains pending. Jio's response to queries about this matter is yet to be received.

Private networks have emerged as a promising use case for 5G technology. They provide coverage in remote locations where commercial network coverage is limited, offer enhanced network control, and allow enterprises to retain sensitive operational data on-premises. A captive private 5G network would empower industries to leverage Industry 4.0, the next technological revolution in manufacturing, which promises to transform production, improvement, and distribution processes.

While the government allows companies to establish their own Wi-Fi and data networks through direct spectrum allocation, telecom operators have expressed concerns over the potential advantages technology companies may gain. They argue that such arrangements create an uneven playing field and make it challenging for telecom operators to compete. As the discussions between Jio and Tesla progress, the outcome will likely impact the direction and dynamics of private network deployment in India.

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