Friday, December 09, 2016

Where will cost cutting in mobile phone technology take us ?

It started with Reliance Jio. The telephone revolution in India.

Reliance Jio (from Mukesh Ambani) offered free calls, local and long distance free, within the country and among many plans plans to charge for Internet bandwidth of 300 MB 4G @ INR 149/-  for 28 days from April 2017.

The offer was a shock for te people and the telecom operators of the country.

Soon the offer of Jio was matched by Mukesh Ambani's brother, Anil, with free local and national calling and Internet bandwidth of 300 MB (3G/4G) for INR 149/- for 28 day period.

This was followed by Aircel who gace a surprise, besides free local and national calling and 300 MB bandwidth (3G/4G) for INR 129/- (28 days)

This was again followed by the country's major public sector operator BSNL, with free local and national calling across all networks and free 300 MB Internet bandwidth. All the above come with free roaming.

Airtel (India's largest cellular phone operator ahead of BSNL) and Idea (from Birla) have followed suit, though not on similar terms. At Rs 149/- you get free local and national calling within the network and at Rs 350/- they are giving free local and national calls across all networks within the country. (both without free roaming with 300 MB Internet bandwidth 3G/4G.)

Now the only major players to fall in line are Vodafone and Tata Docomo, they should be doing so fast.

There is no country in the world with such cellular phone tariffs ! This is taking low-cost innovation to the extremes .. No country in the world is advanced and mature enough in the telecom sector that can offer such down to earth cellular phone rates.

I get a strange feeling, is this going to stay or will there be a major disruption and shakeup in the market resulting in the smaller players without muscle to pull on, disappearing into thin air ? This is a serious question which is also giving many sleepless nights to all cellular operators in the country ..

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