Jio’s winning streak ends, Vodafone Idea returns in action, Telecom News, ET Telecom


The pandemic has spoiled the streak of subscriber victories for India’s biggest telecommunications player, Reliance Jio.

Jio, which entered the telecommunications market in September 2016, with its free voice calls and very low data rates had created a disruption in the industry.

Jio became the biggest player within 3 years of its launch after ousting the biggest telecom operator Airtel from its leading position. The frenzy of adding subscribers has continued since the launch which was just hit by Covid. Jio lost more than 11 million subscribers in the second quarter ended September to 429.5 million users as low-end mobile users failed to recharge due to financial hardship from the pandemic.

But there is a silver lining. Average revenue per user (ARPU), a key performance metric, for the telecom sector increased sequentially to Rs 143.6 from Rs 138.4 in the previous quarter with improved subscriber mix and engagement levels increased customer. Net profit increased 23.5% year on year in the July-September quarter, driven by higher consumption of data and voice.

In a hyper-competitive and low-cost mobile market, telecom players have focused on improving ARPU. The emphasis is renewed on customer quality rather than quantity. Jio’s average wireless data consumption per user per month increased to 17.6 GB for the second quarter.

India has the highest rate of mobile data consumption in the world at around 11-12 GB per user per month and the country is adding up to 25 million new smartphone users each quarter making it a field flourishing to launch digital initiatives. There are 1.18 billion mobile connections, 700 million internet users and 600 million smartphones, which are growing by 25 million per quarter, said Ram Sewak Sharma, director general of the National Health Authority of India.

Speaking from India, Pekka Lundmark, President and CEO, Nokia said that India will play a crucial role in the new era of connectivity driven by next generation or 5G technology bringing fundamental transformation in verticals , public services and communities, with a field of trials underway to provide affordable health services and bridge the digital divide.

Nokia has partnered with Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea in India to develop locally relevant use cases and test 5G technology following the test spectrum awarded by the Ministry of Telecommunications earlier this year.

Following the relief plan announced by the government, Vodafone Idea (Vi) took action. In back-to-back announcements, Vi has made it clear that he will remain a formidable player in the industry. It has partnered with engineering and construction conglomerate Larsen & Toubro on a pilot project to test 5G-based smart city solutions, as part of its ongoing 5G trials. The two will test and validate 5G use cases based on Internet of Things (IoT) and Video Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies leveraging L & T’s Smart City platform, Fusion, to meet the challenges of urbanization, safety and security.

In addition, Vi has partnered with Athonet, a private provider of LTE and 5G solutions, to test 5G-based solutions to develop Industry 4.0 use cases. The partnership with Athonet includes the demonstration of business use cases on 5G in several areas, including smart construction, warehouse, smart agriculture and smart workplace.

Airtel recently demonstrated the first 5G rural trial in India in partnership with Swedish company Ericsson. He also introduced 5G cloud gaming. Jio tested 5G VoNR, AI multimedia chatbot, and immersive high definition (HD) virtual reality (VR) meeting.

On Friday, Jio said he was exploring with global system integrators and SaaS providers to deliver 5G services. Jio 5G is a local 5G stack for radio (5G NR) and core network (5G CN) conforming to the latest standards. Jio 5G Solutions Achieved Single User Peak Throughput of 1.5 Gbps in Field Trials

Finally, Vi Business, the enterprise arm of Vodafone Idea (Vi) announced a partnership with Google Cloud India to offer Google Workspace collaboration solutions for small and medium enterprises (SMEs) and startups with its Vi Business Plus plan from from Rs 399 per month.

Earlier this year, Airtel launched “Airtel Office Internet” for small businesses, SOHOs and tech startups in partnership with Google Cloud and Cisco, with basic packages starting at Rs 999 bundled with additional services such as static IP addresses and parallel ringing.

Vi’s board has already approved the use of the government’s four-year spectrum payment moratorium as part of its back-up plan and the company is now focused on offering new services to its customers. .


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