Tata Teleservices Ltd is planning to launch GSM (Global System for Mobile Communications) service simultaneously in the nine telecom circles of Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, Maharashtra, Mumbai, Bihar, Orissa, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu (including Chennai), Kerala and Karnataka, by January 2009.
The Tata group is also planning to enter the business of developing mobile handsets. The group will consider the feasibility of the mobile-handset project jointly with DoCoMo, which has a range of handsets catering to varying customer needs.
Japanese major NTT DoCoMo has struck a strategic alliance with Tata Teleservices, including buying a 26 per cent stake in Tata Tele.
A Tata Tele executive said they will use DoCoMo's handset designing prowess and bring out both high-end and low-end models. NTT DoCoMo has said it is creating a task force comprising of its directors and technology experts to join forces with the Tatas.
Another Tata Tele official said that the evolution of the just-formed alliance would come about over time. Currently, Tata Tele only provides mobile services, leaving the other aspects, such as procuring and selling handsets, and handling customer interactions to other Tata-group companies. This partnership could change the branding structure, said the official.
According to TTSL's MD Anil Sardana, the partnership, across marketing, handset development and technical support would open up new possibilities for both companies.