COAI was constituted in 1995 as a registered, non-governmental society. The Association is dedicated to the advancement of modern communication through the establishment of world-class mobile infrastructure, products and services and to delivering the benefits of innovative and affordable mobile communication services to the people of India.
Over the years COAI has emerged as the official voice for the Indian telecom industry and interacts directly with Ministries, Policy Makers, Regulators, Financial Institutions and Technical Bodies. It provides a forum for discussion and exchange of ideas between these bodies and the Service Providers, who share a common interest in the development of mobile telephony in the country. COAI collaborates with other Industry Associations such as CII, FICCI, ASSOCHAM, AUSPI, ISPAI, VSAT association etc., with the objective of presenting an industry consensus view to the Government on crucial issues relating to the growth and development of the Indian telecom Industry.
COAI’s core membership includes private cellular operators, namely - Aircel Ltd., Bharti Airtel Ltd., Idea Cellular Ltd., Telewings Communications Services Pvt. Ltd., Videocon Telecom and Vodafone India Ltd. operating across the whole country.
Having started as an Association for mobile service providers, COAI has today expanded to be a thought leader in the telecom and broadband industry, with members including cellular service providers, telecom infrastructure players, and telecom equipment manufacturers; and still expanding to include other allied and critical stakeholders of the sector.
COAI’s present Associate Members include – Alcatel Lucent India Ltd., Cisco Systems India Pvt. Ltd., Ericsson India Pvt. Ltd., IBM India Pvt. Ltd, GTL Infrastructure Ltd., Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd., Indus Towers Ltd, Intel Corporation, Nokia Solutions and Networks Pvt. Ltd., Qualcomm India Pvt. Ltd. and ZTE India Pvt. Ltd.
Further, COAI has dedicated itself towards the training of skilled manpower to ensure efficient and optimum utilization of human resources to the industry. COAI has played a major role in the setting up and operations of the Telecom Sector Skill Council (TSSC) in India under the aegis of the National Skills Development Corporation (NSDC). TSSC is registered under the Societies Registration Act 1860, with members from COAI, ICA, TCOE, NSDC, TAIPA, AUSPI, Govt., Telecom Industry and Academia.
COAI also played a major role in setting up the Telecom Centers of Excellence (TCOE) set up in Public Private Partnership (PPP) mode, with the Government, the Academia and the Industry working together for the sustained growth and progress of the country. The key objective of TCOEs are to create synergy amongst the academia, telecom industry and the government for creation of new services/applications, generation of IPR, development of manufacturing capability, global telecom standardization activities, and promotion of entrepreneurship.
COAI was instrumental in the formation of the Telecommunications Standards Development Society, India (TSDSI), which aims at developing and promoting India-specific requirements, standardizing solutions for meeting these requirements and contributing these to international standards. The TSDSI contributes to global standardization in the field of telecommunications by maintaining the technical standards and other deliverables of the organization, safe-guarding the related IPR, helping create manufacturing expertise in the country, and providing leadership to the developing countries in terms of their telecommunications-related standardization needs.
COAI also interacts with various international organizations such as ITU, GSMA, UMTS, TIA, ITIC, GSA, MMF, Digital Europe, WWRF and 3GPP etc.; Country Embassies as well as the Press & Media to ensure that the issues pertaining to the mobile phone industry are discussed, understood and debated on a wider platform.
Establish India as the global leader of innovative mobile communications infrastructure, products and services achieving a national teledensity of 100%, including broadband.
COAI is focused towards the achievement of its vision by engaging with all the stakeholders in:
- Focusing on customers to ensure they enjoy world class, innovative, secure and affordable mobile communications products and services
- Creating a facilitating ecosystem that provides a nurturing policy, regulatory and legal framework for the industry
- Monetizing National IP and R&D through active involvement in international standards setting
- Training of skilled manpower
The key objectives of the COAI include:
- To assist all concerned authorities through provision of requisite industry information to enable formulation of suitable policies to incentivize growth of the industry
- To help address the common problems of cellular operators relating to operational, regulatory, financial, or licensing through interactions with Ministry of Communications, Ministry of Finance, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, Financial Institutions , etc.
- To be the main interface between the main stakeholders of the Indian Telecom Ecosystem
- To continuously improve the standards and competitiveness of the Cellular Industry and to attain the status of the world class infrastructure and deliver the benefits of affordable mobile telephony services to the people of India
- To carry out studies on industry best practices and undertake research and analysis of cellular experience worldwide
- To maintain and upgrade the quality of services in terms of speech transmission, ability to access services, coverage, security etc., to facilitate the expansion of cellular services
- To dispense information and spread awareness among the national and international operators and consumers alike on issues relating to service quality and other value added services provided by the operators to their subscribers
- To encourage the advent of convergence of the technologies to facilitate the move towards complete convergence in communications as this could greatly help India mitigate the problem of low fixed line penetration and help realize India’s vision of becoming an Information Society