The Great Indian Telecom Wars – A New Day, A New Fight
Indian Telecom Wars between Reliance JIO, Airtel, Vodafone, and Idea continues as we approach the final stages of Idea and Vodafone merger. With Jio’s entry and disruptive pricing, the Telecom sector is going through a rough phase.
On the other hand, hype-competition is a blessing for Indian subscribers who now have access to the cheapest cellular data in the world.
Before we get into the latest tussles happening in the telecom arena, let’s have a quick look at the recent subscriber count for operators.
Latest Telecom Subscriber Count and Market Share 2018
Subscriber Count is in Million
|Operators||Telecom Subscriber (Mn)||Market Share|
The Mobile subscriber base stands at 988.49 Million (Jan 2018), and Airtel is the largest player followed by Vodafone, Idea and Reliance JIO.
Jio is closing fast and may overtake Idea Cellular in the coming months, but the combined Idea and Voda entity will have over 400 million subscribers and 41% market share.
So What’s Latest in the Jio Vs Rest of Telecom operators ongoing tussle.
Jio Vs Airtel – Live IPL 2018 Tussle (Date 12 April 2018)
Recently, Reliance JIO took Bharti Airtel to Delhi High Court for an alleged misleading advertisement related to Live IPL 2018 by Airtel.
As per JIO, Airtel is misleading the customers with the Ad that says “T20 Cricket Live and Free on Airtel 4G”. The allegation by Jio is that Airtel is not clearly mentioning that the data used for streaming live matches is chargeable.
Notably, the Airtel subscribers need to download the Airtel Live TV App to watch the IPL matches, and the company is not charging subscribers for this free service.
So, Airtel is trying to attract customers to get an Airtel 4G sim-card and, in turn, offering Free Live Streaming of IPL matches, not a bad deal.
Mostly, in such offers the data used by the customer is chargeable and in my opinion, Airtel is not doing anything wrong. However, the concern raised by JIO is that Airtel needs to put a disclaimer in a visible spot that the data is chargeable.
This should be ideally done to avoid any confusion, in my opinion as well.
Check the Below AD from Airtel Website, Now the company has put a disclaimer about data usage which was not there earlier.
Moreover, In the Newspaper Ad, Airtel has a disclaimer that data is chargeable, but again it is in small print at the bottom of a full page Ad.
Reliance Jio has appealed to the Delhi High Court to stop the promotion of the campaign as it’s a misleading offer.
However, Honorable Delhi High Court has not asked Airtel to stop the campaign but instead asked to add a clear disclaimer. Airtel has complied with the order and finally added a clear disclaimer as shown in the above image.
Let’s also look at the Jio Offer for watching IPL matches.
JIO IPL 2018 (JIO Cricket Gold Pass Offer)
Unlike Airtel, It is not a free offer and subscribers need to do Rs. 251 recharge, where they get Free Access to IPL matches via JIO TV and additionally get 102 GB data, unlimited calling for 51 days. You can even use the data for other purposes, as there are no restrictions by JIO to limit it only for the IPL matches.
So What’s our Take on This
It is a good practice to share terms and condition of the offers and even better to share important details up front. It is a companies responsibility to be fair to its customers and be transparent.
But at the same time, dragging each other to court over trivial issues and creating a mountain out of a molehill is not desirable.
Also, in this case, JIO is charging Rs 251 and offering data + Free live TV whereas Airtel offers seems free (of course data is chargeable), making it look more lucrative. So that probably caused Jio to complain.
So, What Do you think about this latest scuffle among Telecom Titans? Share in Comments.