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Tariff War: An Ongoing Race Amid Telecom Operators

Gone are the days, when slow, steady use to win the race. Now, if you are not fast, you won’t last. We all have witnessed the ongoing race between the telecom operators, strengthening the aim of keeping customers at their heart.

Post the launch of Reliance Jio, analysts had predicted Bharti  Airtel, Vodafone and Idea cellular to slash their rates in response to the enticing tariffs by Reliance Jio.  In an endeavor to counter the free unlimited lifetime voice offered by Reliance Jio, Vodafone has announced ‘Free National Roaming’ allowing customers across the country to receive incoming call toll free without the need to get special roaming packs.  Both Prepaid and Postpaid Vodafone subscribes would be enjoying the free roaming across the country starting from Diwali i.e. 30th October.  “Even though outgoing charges while roaming had become comparable to home charges, consumer research has shown that incoming charges while roaming have been a hindrance to worry free usage,” said Sandeep Kataria, Director – Commercial, Vodafone India.

Recently, Vodafone had launched International Daily Roaming Pack in August 2016, focusing on the customers and their desire for flexibility. The users can avail the pack at Rs.500/day and offers free incoming calls, whereas, outgoing calls @Rs. 1/minute and 1 MB data @ Rs.1. “Along with our recently launched International Roaming Daily pack which makes International Roaming worry free, we are now confident that Vodafone India customers will not be holding back conversations while travelling nationally or internationally on Vodafone SuperNet,” Kataria added.

In response to Vodafone’s announcement, Airtel announced “Special 4G packs”. As per the news report, Airtel is offering special 4G data packs for pre-paid customers. However, they won’t be free like Jio. The special 4G data pack will offer free data for 90 days. While the pack will be available for Rs.1,495 for existing users, new users can avail the pack on their first recharge of Rs.1494. Reliance Jio along with the “Digital India” revolution is trying to revolutionize the High Speed Network to the entire nation.

As far as we can see, the real threat surrounds Tata Docomo and Idea Cellular. Chances are they might end up selling their business to the foreign telecom operator like Softbank, Singtel etc. or merge with the existing operators like Vodafone and Airtel. It remains to be seen how other brands respond to the latest ongoing tariff slash by leading telecom networks.

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