Jio, Voda Idea and Airtel hike tariffs by 40% and more
02 December 2019
Reliance Jio Infocomm has joined the price hike, raising tariffs by 40 per cent, after the other two telecom service providers - Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel – have raised tariffs by an equal or higher measure.
With this, all three major telecom service providers in the country have hiked tariffs by 40 per cent or more and ended the free-call regime used to woo customers.
The telecom operators, however, have offered to partly compensate customers with enhanced data and other services.
While Jio has increased tariff by 40 per cent without sharing the actual tariff, Airtel and Vodafone Idea have increased prices of their existing packages by as much as 50 per cent. In addition, mobile companies have decided to charge six paise per minute for calls, after they cross the fair usage policy (FUP) limit.
Jio has announced that it will be introducing new all-in-one plans with unlimited voice and data. These plans will have a fair usage policy for calls to other mobile networks. These will be applicable from 6 December 2019, which will be announced soon.
Jio claims that while these all-in-one plans will be priced 40 per cent higher, Jio customers will get up to 300 per cent more benefits. Jio, however, did not clarify on what these benefits are.
“While remaining committed to the ultimate interest of the consumer, Jio will take all necessary steps to help sustain the Indian telecommunications industry. Jio will continue to work with the government on the consultation process for revision of telecom tariffs and looks forward to participation from all other stakeholders,” the company said in a statement.
On Sunday, Vodafone Idea and Airtel too, announced hike in tariffs and introduced new plans. Airtel’s new plans, which will be applicable from 3 December will see an increase in prices between 50p/day to Rs2.85/day, which translates to an increase of Rs15 to Rs85 per month.
“Airtel’s new plans, represent tariff increases in the range of a mere 50 paise per day to Rs2.85 a day and offer generous data and calling benefits. In addition, Airtel provides exclusive benefits as part of the Airtel Thanks platform, which enables access to premium content from Airtel Xstream of about 10,000 movies, exclusive shows, and 400 TV channels, Wynk Music, device protection, anti-virus protection and much more." Aitel stated in a release.
Airtel's Rs998 plan with 336 days validity witnessed biggest hike of almost 50 per cent. Its new plan (replacing the Rs998 plan) would now cost Rs1,498 and offers 24GB data and 365 days validity. Airtel has doubled the data, while increasing validity by 29 days in the new plan.
Airtel subscribers, who wish to go for the Rs1,699 plan would now have to pay Rs2,398, which is an increase of 41 per cent. This plan would continue to offer unlimited calling, 100 SMS and 1.5GB data per day.
Vodafone Idea's new tariff would be effective from 3 December. It has launched 'first recharge packs' where the four first recharge packs will cost Rs97 with Rs45 talk time, 100MB data and voice calls charged at one paisa per second along with 28 days validity. Other three plans would cost Rs197, Rs297 and Rs647, which offer up to 1.5GB data a day and unlimited 'on-net' calling for 84 days.
The company has removed the all-rounder packs and introduced two combo vouchers of Rs49 and Rs79 with 28-day validity. It has announced new prepaid plans with two days, 28 days, 84 days, 365 days validity, and broadly compared with existing plans of similar nature. However, new plans are costlier up to 42 per cent.
Vodafone Idea's unlimited packs with 28-day validity are - Rs149 plan with unlimited voice, including FUP of 1,000 minutes for off-net calls, 2GB data, and 300 SMS. Its new Rs249 plan would provide unlimited voice including FUP of 1,000 minutes for off-net calls, 1.5GB data, and 100 SMS per day.
With the government and the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) making it clear that there will be no floor rate for voice or data and that the telcos would have to thrash out pricing among themselves to cover up losses, state-run Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL) could also follow suit and hike tariffs.