BSNL’s Fixed Mobile Telephony Under TRAI Scanner!


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The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) is examining the limited fixed-mobile telephony (FMT) services of Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd (BSNL). Earlier, when BSNL was relaunching its FMT service which virtually turns mobiles into cordless phones, several telecom operators had revolted against it.

“Our team is working with BSNL…we have asked them for certain clarifications with a view to understand the entire architecture of the limited FMT service. And then we will take a view quickly,” TRAI Chairman R S Sharma told PTI.

Last month, Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) had ordered TRAI to intervene and direct BSNL to withdraw the new portable service. As per the industry body, the services which were being labelled as “distinct”, is “in-principle same version of their Fixed Mobile Telephony (FMT) services”, which had been launched in the previous year but was later withdrawn.

As per the operators who revolted (except Reliance Jio) the new service is disguised as a Public Switched Telephone Network or PSTN service and is a violation of numbering plan and breach of license conditions.

BSNL Chairman Anupam Shrivastava said, “TRAI has asked for certain clarifications from us to which we are responding” but did not give details, as mentioned on PTI.

What’s FMT exactly?

Fixed mobile telephony is a service which allows the customer to use his mobile phone to make and receive landline calls without getting charged to his/her mobile number account.

The service can be availed of as an add-on service for existing BSNL customers having BSNL broadband or new customers opting for BSNL Broadband Fibre To The Home (FTTH). A separate telephone number will be provided to customers to avail of this service.

The services provided under the FMT connection allows the customer to make or receive calls from his fixed telephone which can be done anywhere in the world, provided the users have a stable Wi-Fi and internet data facility.

FMT tariff plan as mentioned on the BSNL website:

Fixed Monthly Charges Rs. 99
Call Charges for Local + STD on landline and Mobile of any network within India Rs. 1.00 per minute
ISD Call As per general landline tariff plan with pulse duration of 30 seconds

What’s BSNL strategy behind it?

BSNL is the 7th largest telecom company in the world, and India’s first public sector along with MTNL to provide landline facility service in India. FMT services will provide a boost to its existing landline generated revenue which has seen a slump after mobile phones took over the telecom space.

Do let us know in comments about what you think about this FMT service by BSNL. Do you think they are breaking the law?

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