VNL Participates at Defcom India 2012 2 Nov, 2012

VNL announces its participation at Defcom India 2012, Stall 37 & 38 at Manekshaw Centre, Swarna Jayanti Marg, Delhi Cantt., New Delhi, from 8th – 9th November 2012.

On display will be a range of VNL’s indigenously developed solutions for Defense and Homeland Security. These include:

  • Rapidly deployable GSM communication and broadband solutions.
  • Point to Point with Multi Hop and Point to Multipoint radios for high capacity data links in Licensed and Unlicensed bands.
  • Secure mobile communications for tactical operations.
  • End-to-end integrated border security and surveillance solutions.
  • Unattended ground sensors & command system.

These innovative solutions have the ability to transform the communication capabilities of the Armed Forces and give them the critical advantage in the digital battleground of modern warfare. They support the complex multi-dimensional role of the Forces, which involves both peacetime as well as tactical battlefield scenarios and reflect a deep understanding of our defense priorities as we strive to keep the upper hand in the world of network centric warfare.

Visit us at Defcom India 2012 ,and see the exciting future of indigenous Indian innovation to meet India’s security needs.

High Level Delegation from Brazil visits VNL solar powered sites 18 Apr, 2012

Village children with members of the Brazilian Delegation in front of a VNL WorldGSM™ Village Base station on the roof of a house.

The Fourth BRICS Summit was hosted in New Delhi on 29 March 2012 under the overarching theme of “BRICS Partnership for Global Stability, Security and Prosperity.”

On the sidelines of the summit, VNL was privileged to host a high level Delegation from Santa Catarina (SC) State, Brazil, who visited VNL sites in villages in the district of Alwar, Rajasthan, a few hours away from Delhi.

The Chief of the Delegation was State Congressman and 1st Secretary State Govt. of Santa Catarina, Dr. Jaílson Lima da Silva accompanied by State Congresswoman
Ms. Dirce Heidersheidt, State Congressman Mr. Mauro Nadal, Mr. Ronério Heiderscheidt, Mayor of Palhoça City, SC state, Mr. Paulo Roberto Eccel, Mayor of Brusque, SC state,
Mr. Ailton Nazareno Soares, Rector of UNISUL (University of Santa Catarina), Ms. Katia Sarlet Rezende, from the Department of Institutional Relations of Santa Catarina, Mr. Jucinei Cardoso, Journalist ALESC TV and Radio and Dr. Jean Christian Weiss, Lawyer.

Members of the Delegation get to know the WorldGSM™ site in detail

The Delegation was keen to understand Indian innovation and visiting the VNL solar powered GSM and broadband sites in the villages gave them insight into how sustainable technologies could be used to meet the challenges of development.

VNL‘s award winning WorldGSM™ technology is ideally suited to establishing sustainable GSM & Broadband  networks for unconnected populations in small towns and remote locations. This is a catalyst in the socio-economic development of the community and adds to the GDP.

The Delegation was thrilled to see the technology at work in the villages and spent several hours interacting with village folk and schoolchildren,braving the heat and dust that is typical at this time of the year.

In the classroom with children: (L to R) Mr. Ravi Ailawadhi, Dr. Jailson Lima da Silva and Ms. Dirce Heidersheidt

Broadband for village schools : Dr. Jailson Lima da Silva (L) talks to a young student along with Mr. Ravi Ailawadhi (R) in front of a VNL Solar Powered Rural Internet Kiosk – “Gurukul”.

Members of the Delegation with staff and students and village folk at the village school. (L toR) Ms. Dirce Heidersheidt, Dr. Jean Christian Weis
and Mr. Ronério Heiderscheidt

Members of the Delegation with staff, students and more village folk at the village school. (Standing L to R) Dr. Jailson Lima da Silva, Mr. Ravi Ailawadhi,
Mr. Mauro Nada and Ms. Katia Sarlet Rezende (seated in center)

Mr. Ailton Nazareno Soares and Dr. Jailson Lima da Silva access the Internet on their laptop and handheld devices using broadband connectivity over Wi-Fi brought by VNL’s solar powered WorldGSM™ solution

In June 2011, VNL signed a “General Protocol of Intent of Partnership in Strategic and Future Projects” with A Fundacao Universidade do Sul de Santa Catarina - (UNISUL), A Universidade Estadual de Goias-UEG,and A Universidade Estadual de Mato Grosso (UNEMAT).

The Protocol aims to facilitate technical, scientific and technological cooperation through four Pilot Projects in the State of Santa Catarina ,Mato Grosso and Goias -specifically in the municipalities of Palhoca and Aguas Mornas.

These projects are :

  1. Environmental Education as Strategic for the development of scientific knowledge and skills
  2. Digital Inclusion by Distance Courses
  3. Technology in Fishing Community
  4. VNL Technology implementation for Strategic Family Health of Palhoca City


Diesel to Power Telecom Towers - The Big Problem 5 Apr, 2012

Way back in 2004, VNL began its journey to develop WorldGSM™ – a completely solar powered GSM and broadband network solution for rural and remote locations. Top of the agenda: cut down power consumption and remove diesel from the equation – otherwise network viability and profitability would never be possible. In the past 7 years we’ve watched as green power has moved from the domain of CSR initiative to the centre of the OPEX debate.

Diesel Genset
A traditional Diesel powered GSM Site

How bad is the diesel problem? Let’s start with India: According to E&Y and FICCI * “Currently, telecom towers consume an average of about 5-6 kilo watt of energy coupled with an average of 8 hours of diesel generator running time due to power outages. On average, 27 million units of electricity are consumed per day. Average diesel consumption per site per hour is about 2.5 liters, translating to 6 million liters of diesel per day. This translates to consumption of more than 2 billion liters of diesel per year for cell sites, which is subsidized by GoI.”

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India estimates the diesel challenge as follows: “India has presently around 400,000 telecom towers, with average power consumption per tower being 3 to 4 kW. Assuming 8 hours of operation by DG sets, an average fuel consumption of 8760 liters of diesel every year per tower, total carbon emission on account of diesel use by telecom towers is estimated to be around 10mt of CO2, while the emissions on account of power drawn from the grid by towers is estimated to be around 6mt of CO2.”

Africa has a similar story to tell.

In a recent article in extensia on Telcos in Nigeria eying alternative power to run the network the figures are staggering: between MTN, Globacom, Airtel and Etisalat, there are 20,000 base stations that consume a total of 49.5 million liters of diesel to power the sites every month, at a total cost of N8.4 billion. All this, for Nigeria alone.

The rising costs of energy bills can actually force some CEO’s to comment that a way to address this is to hike call rates. See this interesting article from Balancing Act here.

This VNL WorldGSM™ Site in Africa saves $2000 per month

VNL is clear. The long term solution lies in reducing the power consumption to a level that a renewable solution is justifiable on all counts: Capex, Opex, and Payback. VNL has been at the forefront of the “diesel free network” revolution. In Africa VNL deployments of it’s WorldGSM™ solar powered voice and data network solution in rural locations have saved $2000 per site per month by removing diesel from the equation. Compared to a traditional site in a rural area a 222 configuration VNL Rural site can give up to $30,000 in savings each year– considering that outages run as high as 16 hours a day in many cases.

Going green is Green is good for business. WorldGSM™ is showing the way!!


The power of mobile phones 16 Mar, 2012

The Power of Mobile Phones in Rural World by VNL

“I feel like I’m human now, not cut-off from my world, no longer isolated” were the words of Ram Kishan, in a village of Alwar district ,commenting on the power of his mobile phone, in an interview for the ITU-UN film “ICT’s for a Better Future”. His village was connected to the BSNL Rajasthan network through VNL’s solar powered GSM and Broadband solution as part of a pilot project for India’s USO Fund. You can see the film clip of Ram Kishan’s village and VNL’s solar powered WorldGSM™ base station here:

Mobile phones are driving economic growth in the developing world. But that’s not all – networks in developing countries also have valuable lessons to offer the West. Read more in this interesting article by Suzie Christodulu in cellular-news.

Wrap Up of Mobile World Congress 2012 in Barcelona, Spain February 27 - March 1, 2012. 12 Mar, 2012


The world’s largest industry defining B2B event in telecommunications attracted over 67,000 attendees this year. Nearly 1,500 companies showcased their organisations through exhibition stands and hospitality space across eight halls at the spectacular Fira Montjuïc venue, covering a space of 58,000 square meters.

VNL booth at MWC 2012

Sharing our passion to Connect the Unconnected: A large number of visitors dropped in at the VNL booth on all days.

VNL’s stand was in Hall 2, showcasing the award winning WorldGSM™ solar powered GSM and Broadband solution. This year the theme of the stall was “Green is Good for Business” and VNL focused on sites from Africa and South Asia where operators realized Opex savings of up to $24,000 per site in a year – much the same savings that VNL has delivered across the world in different operator networks.

VBTS at MWC 2012

VNL’s real life Village Base Station on display.

The centre of attention at the VNL stand was a real life Village Base Station (VBTS) which, with 2 solar panels, occupied a space of just 2×2 meters on the floor of the stand. VNL also shared details of the WorldGSM™ solution developed for remote islands in Indonesia to deliver affordable GSM & Broadband services to rural communities on these islands. VNL’s Zero Opex and payback theme attracted a large number of visitors from the telecom world who were interested in knowing more about VNL’s deployments and the results.

Rajiv Mehrotra in the panel discussion “Networks: Infrastructure Costs in The Age of Austerity”

On 29th February, Rajiv Mehrotra Chairman & CEO, participated in a panel discussion on “Networks: Infrastructure Costs in The Age of Austerity” - in today’s environment of austerity, operators are rethinking business models and searching out new solutions and revisiting old ones to deliver lower-cost networks. This lively session highlighted some of the most outstanding examples of ingenuity from across the world.

Also on display at the VNL stand for the very first time were special applications of VNL’s GSM and Broadband innovation used for privately owned and managed communication networks in remote industrial locations and strategic operations.

Rajiv Mehrotra, Chairman & CEO VNL, explaining the details of VNL’s WorldGSM™ the Hon. Minister of Communications & IT, Govt. of India, Shri Kapil Sibal.

Rajiv Mehrotra Chairman and CEO, VNL, discusses special applications of VNL’s solution in privately owned and managed communication networks

Across the aisle from VNL was the Shyam stand, showcasing solutions from India’s leading name in IP cellular backhaul.

Farewell Montjuic!!

Mobile World Congress 2013 moves to a new home Fira de Barcelona Gran Via – see you there!!

VNL Participates at Mobile World Congress 2012 23 Feb, 2012

A simple switch to WorldGSM™ got an African mobile operator an average saving of $24,000 per site in a year.

VNL announces its participation again at GSMA’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, February 27th – March 1st, 2012.

Rajiv Mehrotra Chairman and CEO will be speaking on a panel entitled “Networks : Infrastructure Costs in the Age of Austerity”.

In today’s environment of austerity, operators are rethinking business models, searching out new solutions and revisiting old ones to deliver lower-cost networks. This session highlights some of the most outstanding examples of ingenuity and shows how operators around the world can employ similar measures.

Networks: Infrastructure Costs In The Age Of Austerity
Wednesday, February 29, 2012
1:45 PM to 3:15 PM Local Time (CET)
Location: Hall 5 - Room 6

VNL will be showcasing the dramatic OPEX savings achieved by WorldGSM™ sites deployed in Africa and the powerful payback proposition on CAPEX invested in these sites. For years we have heard that renewables take too long for payback. VNL’s WorldGSM™ solution is changing this perception across the world – captured in its current campaign -‘Green is Good for Business’.

In Africa, WorldGSM™ sites have saved upto $24,000 a year per site in diesel expenses alone.This will be of special interest to mobile operators and tower companies alike, as they search for ways to reduce high OPEX on account of huge diesel expenses to power their rural and remote sites in the absence of reliable grid power.

VNL’s solar powered WorldGSM™ Village Base Station (VBTS) will be on display at the stand.

VNL makes the award-winning WorldGSM™ solution - the sustainable GSM & Broadband network infrastructure solution specifically made for areas with ARPUs of less than $2. WorldGSM™ is the first commercially viable GSM & Broadband solution that is independent of the power grid. It requires no grid power or diesel generator backup. It is also designed for simple delivery and deployment by local, untrained workers – all resulting in zero OPEX, dramatically lower CAPEX, and near zero maintenance.

VNL WorldGSM™ Village Site in Africa
VNL WorldGSM™ Village Site in Africa

The next billion subscribers will be coming from rural populations, away from saturated urban markets. If you’re planning on visiting Mobile World Congress 2012, stop by VNL’s stand and see the future of rural voice and data networks. VNL is changing the DNA of rural telecom by providing commercially viable new building blocks that will transform the way you build your networks in the future.

Visit us in Stand #2B33 to learn more.
Click here to arrange an appointment to see WorldGSM™ in the booth.

Wrap-up of India Telecom 2011 Show, New Delhi, Dec 7-9, 2011 2 Jan, 2012

VNL participated at India Telecom 2011 held at Pragati Maidan, New Delhi, from December 7-9, 2011. The show, with the theme “m-Powering India” was organized by Department of Telecommunications (DoT), Government of India, in association with Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). It was the sixth year of this international exhibition and conference showcasing India’s success story in telecom to the world.

VNL and Shyam were Principal Sponsors of the event.

India Telecom 2011 was inaugurated in the morning of 7th December 2011, by the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India, Dr. Manmohan Singh at the Defence Research & Development Organization (DRDO) Bhavan, followed by the ribbon cutting ceremony at the Pragati Maidan venue by Shri Milind Deora, Hon’ble Minister of State for Communications & IT, Govt.of India.

Rajiv Mehrotra, Founder Chairman of VNL, participated in the afternoon conference session entitled ‘Socio-economic impact of mobile connectivity’. Mr. Mehrotra made a thought provoking presentation on ‘Sustainable Energy Solutions for Rural India’ which was well received by the audience. Other distinguished panelists included Mr. Fredrik Jejdling, Managing Director and Head of Region, Ericsson India, Mr. Prashanth V Adiraju, Director, New Platforms Business Group, Intel South Asia ,Mr. Sandeep Girotra, Head of India Region, Nokia Siemens Networks and Dr. B. K. Gairola, Director General, NIC. Shri. R. Chandrashekhar, Secretary, Department of Telecommunications, Ministry of Communications & Information Technology, Government of India, chaired the session.

At the exhibition, VNL put up an impressive display of its products and solutions, clearly reflecting the leadership status of Shyam group companies in indigenous ‘Indian Product’ innovation. The VNL-Shyam stand was the centre of attention with live demonstration of the WorldGSM™ rural network solution for delivering cost-effective GSM and broadband services to rural India and a display of innovative solutions for networks in metros and urban areas. Visitors were very eager to learn more about WorldGSM™ and ‘Gurukul’ -VNL’s completely solar powered Village Internet Kiosk solution, that provides broadband access through Wi-Fi connectivity with VNL’s solar powered base station.

Mr. Mehrotra personally introduced Shri Sachin Pilot Hon’ble MOS (C & IT) and Shri Milind Deora, Hon’ble MOS (C & IT) to VNL’s award winning rural connectivity solution. The Ministers took a keen interest in understanding how VNL provided a viable business case for mobile operators to rapidly roll out GSM and broadband networks in rural areas and address the challenges of poor rural tele-density and the digital divide. He presented in great detail how VNL’s technology was transforming the lives of villagers living in rural areas, while at the same time enabling mobile operators to make a profit even at very low ARPUs. They were very interested in learning more about how VNL’s rural solution required no connections to the electrical grid, or any expensive diesel generators.

Many senior representatives from different wings of the Government visited the VNL-Shyam stand and had detailed interactions with the team to understand all aspects of the indigenous ‘Indian Product’ innovations on display. These included officials from DOT, TEC, TRAI, TDSAT, BSNL, MTNL, Defense and Paramilitary organisations - Army, Air Force, NSG and CISF - and several other ministries and departments. A large number of young students were also seen on all days of the show going about the stand asking lots of questions and taking notes on the solar powered rural GSM and broadband network solution.

India Telecom was a resounding success in reaffirming the leadership status of VNL and Shyam in the telecom equipment R&D and manufacturing sector in India.

VNL will be participating next at Mobile World Congress, February 27-March1 2011 in Barcelona, Spain-Stand#2B47. If you weren’t able to attend India Telecom, and are planning to be in Barcelona in February, register now to see the latest from India’s leading telecommunications infrastructure innovation company.