New Delhi: State-owned telecom major Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd. (BSNL) has set aside an outlay of Rs 800 crore to consolidate its country-wide billing processes for better convenience and to reduce operational costs across fixed line, mobile and broadband.
BSNL will award the billing contract to vendors next week that will lead to the consolidation of the existing 330 telecom districts into four data centres - Hyderabad, Kolkata, Chandigarh and Pune by December.
Currently Pune, Chandigarh, Kolkata and Trichy handle the billing for BSNL's cellular services, while billing for its broadband services is done from Bangalore.
The new billing system will replace the existing cluster of 'secondary switching areas' (SSAS) or telecom districts with a single system catering to all the SSAS and is expected to be fully operational by the year-end. The new consolidated billing process will enable customers to get a common bill for all the services like broadband, WLL, wireline, leaseline and cellular services.
Moreover the consolidation will lead to a reduction in operational costs for BSNL as the telecom districts within a group will use common hardware and software for generating bills. This will reduce their database maintenance cost as well. The company has started converting its remote switching units in the rural areas to the main exchanges in the nearby cities. Wi-max technology will be used for setting up the base for rural telephony.