Airtel wants to take you to the dial-up Internet Era

Recently TRAI had sought comments for a draft direction on delivering broadband services in a transparent way. In addition, to seeking comments on transparency measures like clear information of tariff plans and timely usage alerts, there was a key element on broadband speeds –

ensure that download speed of broadband service provided to the fixed broadband subscriber is not reduced below 512 kbps in any broadband tariff plan

What caught our attention among the several comments was industry leader Airtel’s. Airtel sought this change for the above direction 

Ensure that download speed of broadband service provided to the fixed broadband subscriber is not reduced below 64 kbps in case of Fair usage broadband tariff plan after expiry of assigned data quota of the customer.

This in our opinion is nothing but taking things to the pre-broadband or the dial-up era. What’s more interesting is Airtel’s rationale to seek the change. According to Airtel, some customers misusing minimum broadband speed provision and tending to overuse the data limit in their quota is the reason for increased broadband costs for everyone.

The story does not end here. There was a striking similarity in the AUSPI and COAI submission and Airtel’s submission. It was more like the Airtel’s demands become industry’s demands. Refer screenshots –





Our Take

It is unacceptable to seek a downgrade to 64 kbps. After all, it is the same providers who talk about next generation networks all the time. In contrast, TRAI must consider announcing the minimum broadband speed as at least 2 Mbps.

What about the minimum speed guarantee before FUP limit is surpassed? It is a fact that majority of the broadband customers (both wired and wireless) in India do not see promised speeds. Here is a classic case, again from an Airtel customer –



We find it unfortunate that ISPs in a bid to compete in terms of speeds promised extravagant speeds with a *up to* clause in small text.

Note: It is not necessary that all the comments would be implemented but if telcos had their way and we the citizens don’t take part in the decision-making process we run the risk of losing out. Just like we all campaigned and made a positive impact on the net-neutrality front, let’s keep our eyes open and act when the need arises. In this front, at TelecomTalk, we plan to play a more active role in the coming days.

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51 Comments on "Airtel wants to take you to the dial-up Internet Era"


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February 15, 2016 11:19 pm 11:19 PM

Airtel’s new policy for speed :

For 2g 16 k b p s
For 3g 32 kbls
For 4g. 64 kbps
5g 128 kbps
6g. 256 kbps
7g. 512 kbps….

It means we are getting 7g speed … Ye hai Digital india…. Kisi ko nhi pata ki hum 7g me live kar rahe hai ….Wahh..
Wah kya digital india hai …. Lol

February 15, 2016 10:10 pm 10:10 PM

Well said.

In my native place Tiruchengode, BSNL is providing best speed* (even before and after fair usage).

* means – only if the upload link speed is set at 1000 Kbps and download link speed is set 10% more than the plan’s original download speed (that is 4506 Kbps for 4 Mbps (4096 Kbps) connection).

February 15, 2016 3:07 pm 3:07 PM

I Fully Support Your Stand.We dont want to go to the dial up era.We want Next generation services.Its High Time India Became A Developed nation rather than an Developing nation.Lets take an stand against this money minded telecos like Airtel.Minimum 2 mbps should be the Mandate