Airtel Rs 649 Plan Relaunched With 50GB Data; Depression Continues For Telecom Industry!
The Rs 649/- plan also offers 100 free SMS per day, and subscribers will get free access to Airtel TV, Airtel Secure, and Airtel Wynk Music.
Airtel had discontinued the Rs 649/- plan in the recent revision of the Airtel myPlan Infinity postpaid plans. Now, after a month, the telecom operator has decided to bring it back. After the last revision, Airtel had only three plans under Rs 1,000/- – Rs 399/-, Rs 499/- and Rs 799/-.
The Rs 649/- plan has been reintroduced with more benefits and features. The plan now offers 50GB of data per month with a free add-on connection.
Airtel Rs. 649 Plan – Calls, Data & Add-On Features
The revamped Rs 649/- plan now offers 50GB of high-speed 4G data per month, up from the 30GB previously offered. The plan also offers unlimited voice calls with free national roaming without any FUP limit.
The Rs 649/- plan also offers 100 free SMS per day, and subscribers will get free access to Airtel TV, Airtel Secure, and Airtel Wynk Music. The latest inclusion to the list is a free add-on connection, which lets users add a child Airtel postpaid plan to another connection and enjoy similar benefits.
|Old Data Cap||30GB|
|New Data Cap||50GB|
|Calls||Unlimited Calls (Local + STD + National Roaming)|
|Benefits||Free Wynk Music Subscription, Airtel Live TV, Free Handset Damage Protection (Airtel Secure) & Free One Add-On Connection.|
Depression Continues For Telecom Industry
Recently Reliance Jio announced a free full-year Prime membership for all the existing customers. The Mukesh-Ambani-led telecom firm continues to focus on their expansion model by offering data and unlimited calling at dirt-cheap prices.
In a bid to multiply its subscriber base, Reliance Jio continues to cut its tariff rates with more offers. The model has directly affected the business of other operators in the industry. Jio has already forced Aircel and Docomo to wind-up their operations, while other operators like Airtel, Vodafone, Idea Cellular and BSNL are incurring losses or reduced profits.
On the other hand, the one-and-half-year-old Reliance Jio continues to grow at a steady rate. The telecom company currently boasts over 175 million customers, which has doubled its market share to 13.71 percent from 6.40 percent a year ago.
Customer Acquisition & Retention
In the last one year, Reliance Jio has primarily focused on building a stable subscriber base by leveraging on customer acquisition and user retention in the near term. The latest free Prime membership for existing users will help Reliance Jio retain the customers for another year.
The other leading incumbents continue to offer cheap plans at discounted tariff to with match Reliance Jio’s with segmented offers. The down trading has resulted in sharp sequential revenue decline for the other telecom operators.
The company is spending huge amounts on content and also announced its Jio Payments Bank. Reliance Jio continues to add more users and their Jio Phone has been a huge hit among the rural masses, tier II and III cities and small towns. Reliance Jio is now the largest shareholder in the feature phone market in the country.
The company is now trying to shift the focus of users from data usage towards its content portfolio. Currently, Jio has a bunch of applications and content offerings under its belt for free. Eventually, the company plans to monetize its offerings over a period of time.
Airtel May Post First Loss Ever in 15 Years
Bharti Airtel presently enjoys the largest market share with the most number of subscribers in the country. The Bharti-Mittal-led company may report its first net loss in the fiscal fourth quarter, its first in last 15 years of operations. The primary reasons will be Reliance Jio, a cut in the international termination rates and also subscribers moving to lower-priced plans from higher ones.
Idea Cellular recently reported a loss in the last quarter, and it seems to have widened in the March quarter mainly because of negative operational leverage. Bank of America-Merrill Lynch has estimated the Airtel’s loss at Rs 58.5 crore, while Kotak Securities has estimated Rs 377 crore net loss.
Airtel is badly hurt by the reduced local interconnect rates. The company had last reported a net loss back in 2002, fifteen years ago, after it started its very-first operations in the country in 1995.