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Reliance Jio to seek additional points of intersection with Airtel, Vodafone and Idea

14 September 2016

Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio Infocomm would ask for additional points of intersection during its meeting with Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular.

According to reports, Reliance Jio, in view of the call drops issue faced by users, would ask for additional points of intersection in a one-on-one meeting with the top three telcos.

In return, the players would likely demand a termination charge higher than the 14 paise/minute fixed by the sectoral watchdog due to the huge inbound traffic from Jio.

Reliance Jio might ask for 7,000 additional points of intersection on an immediate basis, according to commentators.

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) had recently asked Reliance Jio as also the top three incumbent players to resolve the interconnect matter. Trai had warned of intervention if quality of services was affected and consumers suffered.

The top three telcos said they would offer additional PoIs as required.

Jio, last month demanded 12,500 intersection points from the top three incumbents to meet the needs of 22 million customers initially, but the companies only released 1,400 PoIs to the 4G entrant.

Meanwhile, Reliance Jio's ambitious plan to roll out data-backed telecom services with zero voice tariff along with cheapest 4G internet had been falling short of the required number of customers to make it viable. The dynamics of the market and equations of the investment dictated that Jio could break even only with the acquisition of 100 million customers by the end of 2016.

However, the latest data showed that Jio was falling short on that plan; in fact, by as much as 50 per cent, in terms of new customer acquisition. According to commentators, this might push back Jio's planning of breaking even on its investments.

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