Ever since the launch of Jio, Indian telcos have been caught up in the tussle of trying to beat it in terms of pricing. Airtel, which was the largest telecom operator in India until recently, has revealed a new plan in an attempt to topple Jio from its current popularity.
The new plan, at Rs 449, offers a benefit of 2GB of daily 4G data along with 100 daily SMSes and unlimited calling. These benefits are valid for a period of 70 days, which sums the benefits to a total of 140GB throughout the validity period.
Airtel already has two other similar plans, and for the prices of Rs 448 and Rs 499, it offers 1.4GB and 2GB data, respectively, for a validity of 82 days. The plans also come with bundled benefits in form of free SMSes and unlimited calling.
In contrast, Jio is offering 2GB per day, for 70 days, at a price of Rs 398. For the validities of 84 days and 91 days, Jio users have to pay Rs 448 and Rs 498, respectively. While Jio offers better benefits compared to Airtel, the actual value for money also depends on factors such as the quality and availability of the network.
The plan could not necessarily be aimed at taking on Jio, but on the new competitor in the market instead. Vodafone and Idea Cellular finally merged into a single entity, overtaking Airtel in terms of the number of users. So, it is possible that Airtel is trying to retain its users from not being driven away by the new partnership.
The duo intends to clash head-on with Jio by collectively benefiting from shared network capacity and spectrum allocation fees, which would threaten the reach of the other two dominant networks – Airtel and Jio. In terms of revenue too, Vodafone Idea is now at the top with Airtel following closely and leaving Jio behind by a margin or almost 10% of the market’s revenue share.
The ongoing battle between telcos should take an interesting turn in the coming days and we hope these days are exciting for consumers more than anyone else.