Reliance Jio has taken the Indian telecom sector by storm. One can say that it is almost war time in the Indian telecom industry. The current telecom companies in India are trying out different things to come to terms with this bolt of lightning called Jio. Here is how the top four Indian telecom companies have responded to Jio.
This government company has adopted the no fuss but more freebies policy. According to certain reports in a leading newspaper, BSNL is all set bring down the tariffs. BSNL has ambitious plans of giving its 2G and 3G customers cheaper data plans and free voice plans. According to the statement given by the BSNL chairman and Managing Director Mr. Anupam Srivastava, BSNL is planning new year offers like lifetime free voice plans. The zero voice tariff plans which will be launched in the new year will be lower than Jio’s Rs 149/- plan. Mr. Srivastava said that BSNL plans will be less by almost Rs 2/- to Rs 4/- as compared to Jio.
It is investment time for Vodafone-India,which is India’s second largest telecom company. The UK-based Vodafone Group Plc has made the largest Foreign Direct Investment or FDI in India in rupees. Vodafone-India has received a funding of Rs 47,700 crores,which is approximately$7.2 billion dollars from Vodafone Group PLC. This funding has helped in reducing Vodafone-India’s huge debt and it has also helped them in stocking up funds for the spectrum auction. The auction includes the airwaves that are needed for 4G services in India. The MD and CEO of Vodafone-India, Mr Sunil Sood said that this money will be mainly used the future 4G and 5G technologies and in the expansion of technology.
The Idea adopted the “wait and watch” policy and is now working with Jio. Idea will be providing 230% additional capacity to Jio for access and long-distance interconnection. This will allow two-way calling between both the networks. Idea had earlier provided 565 ports for access. It has now increased this to 1,865 ports. Idea cellular has also issued a statement that it will increase by almost 50% the National Long Distance Capacity which will help in opening nearly 2,100 ports for traffic between the two companies. Idea has clearly stated that it will continue expanding capacity for Jio in the near future in order to ensure flawless traffic flow between the two networks.
For Airtel it is war time! There is a war of words going on between the two telecom companies. Reliance pointed out that though Airtel had increased the number of points for better interconnection between the two networks but the increase was not at par with the current requirement. As a result, the number of call drops will only increase and the customers would continue suffering.
On the other hand, Airtel said that the augmentation in the interconnection points was almost three times than that it was earlier. It would serve more than 15 million Jio subscribers. Airtel argues that Jio does not have that huge customer base.
Airtel said that according to interconnect agreement the commissioning period is 90 days from the day Jio makes the payment but Airtel would release the interconnect points well in time. However, Reliance said that as per quality parameters the augmentation has to be done on priority. They also found faults in the interconnection points of Airtel. Airtel rebutted that these allegations were being made by Reliance to cover up their own technical issues. There is also lots of problems regarding portability.
Every telecom company has reacted in some way or the other to disruption in the industry brought about by Jio. This clearly shows the hard hitting impact that Jio has had on the Indian telecom sector.