Reliance Jio Infocomm, the telecom arm of Mukesh Ambani headed Reliance Industries is leaving no stone untouched to roll out 4G services to usher a new age of technology in the country. The company have been tied knot even with its competitors like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone, Reliance Communications on different matters.
Jio has made deal with RCom for their inter-city OFCN, intra-city OFCN and 45000+ towers. They will use Viom Networks‘ 42000+ towers across the country. They even made deal with arch rival Airtel to share their infrastructure – including inter & intra- city optical fiber network, submarine cables (i2i network), towers (of Bharti Infratel) and more. The company, on the international level is a part of the Bay of Bengal gateway cable system that connects Middle East, South Asia, Europe and South-East Asia under the sea. While the company continues the effort to lay OFC across cities of their own the balanced strategy of creating infrastructure to deliver next generation data connectivity seems to be in the perfect path for Jio.
While Reliance Jio is busy to make more deals with other players we can assume the strategy and future plans of the company.
Reliance jio Voice strategy
Though Jio has won spectrum on 1800MHz band in 14 circles, I don’t think at the beginning they will come up with traditional voice services as they don’t have fallback 2G/3G network. Only way it would be possible if there is another deal with RCom or Airtel to use their 2G/3G GSM or CDMA network. VoLTE is yet to mature, but will Jio take the chance to introduce at the start? Jio can operate as MVNO over Reliance Communications, but I think all the major moves regarding the launch will be live as soon as new government forms in the center.
VoIP services and OTT services may be a breather for Jio’s initial customers, as Facebook is offering free voice calling also. There are chances that Jio may have their own OTT/VoIP services, powered by Nimbuzz or something else.
Reliance Jio Data-focused plans
It’s almost sure that Jio will target the data as major source of revenue. What I think is they will launch 4G services using LTE-TDD on 2300MHz band initially, and later LTE-FDD on 1800MHz band. At the same time they will keep launching WiFi services to reach existing smart device users.
Unlike Airtel, Jio is making its availability in small towns also, where demand is high. In these zones, Jio’ 4G can bring technological revolution.
Wholesale Data & Bandwidth Seller – More partnerships to follow
Apart from retail data to end customers, Reliance Jio will try its best to become wholesale data and bandwidth seller to other companies including small internet service providers. Jio will offer them sharing the infra (more specifically optic fiber network or cable network), Jio will sell them domestic and international data and bandwidth. Jio will set up more data centers in the country to handle this much of traffic. I don’t see Jio to become FTTH service provider in next 2-3 years, but with so many fiber access they may enter into FTTH services – which will bundle many services under one hood.
I believe there will be some drastic changes in government policies including local-loop-unbundling of BSNL’s existing infrastructure and BSNL and MTNL’s partial or complete privatization. Whatever it goes, Jio will definitely get the advantages of it.
Reliance Jio WiFi – to reach existing smart phone users
Like in Gujarat, Jio will introduce WiFi services in other metros and cities of the country. It will help them to hook existing smart phone or tablet users on their ultra high-speed data services. Definitely they will launch Hotspot v2.0, so that people can easily roam across WiFi networks, easily switch from WiFi to cellular and vice versa.
An initial launch of free public WiFi will also give them a glimpse of usage pattern of different users before the actual launch of Jio 4G.
Monetizing from WiFi is a complex thing, and if Jio offers free 1GB-5GB over WiFi depending upon customers’ usage and more at a low price it will be useful for users.
Technology – Dual Mode LTE, CA-LTE, LTE Multicast, Hotspot 2.0, Cloud, Apps
Jio will use several technology which are relatively newer – dual-mode LTE (both LTE-TD on 2300MHz and LTE-FDD on 1800MHz), carrier aggregation (a part of LTE-Advanced), LTE multicast (broadcast of one event to several customers in a wide area), Hotspot 2.0 (enables global WiFi Roaming, smart switching to WiFi from cellular & vice versa).
Cloud services, which is yet to be popularized in India, will take a roll on the broadband. Anil Ambani headed RCom’s subsidiary, Global Cloud Xchange, earlier known as Reliance Globalcom focuses on delivering the world’s first true cloud ecosystem, in addition to network infrastructure and data center capability enhancements. There are high chances that Jio may tie up with RCom.
Apps will play an important role to increase data demand. Reliance Jio may have their own App store as well as own branded devices.
TV, Security, e-Learning, e-Medicine & other e-Services
Like in Verizon in United States, Jio will try offer triple play service – internet, phone and TV. Jio will have several portfolio under its offerings – TV, sercurity products, e-Eduacation, e-Medicine to bring the country into digital highway.
Reliance Jio Handsets
Jio will definitely bring their own range of smartphones, tablets, routers and dongles which will support their LTE-TDD network. A 4G smartphone worth Rs 6,000 will break the barrier. A dual support of LTE TD and LTE FDD will be a must in next 1 year or less.
Reliance Jio Retail Presence
RIL has its strong retail presence across the country. Apart from Jio 4G’s kisoks to be available in major locations, Jio will use its own Reliance Digital chain to introduce 4G/LTE to new products to end customers. They can use RCom’s branded stores also to reach maximum. RIL has its own brand, ReConnect under which several smart devices are sold.
Reliance Jio’s Tariff
This will be the most tricky part. If Jio does note make ultra cheap tariff for new customers, people will not go for it. Jio is on the news for very long time and mostly because of its low tariff entry hype, people are just waiting for it. This is Jio competes with itself to keep the promises. Existing users of 3G, EVDO or local ISPs will have to replan their strategy to counteract Jio’s entry.
As a reader what do you think ? Can Reliance Jio Make any difference in Indian Voice and Data Market do let us know your views in comments.