Bharti Airtel to provide more PoIs following payments from Jio, to jointly conduct tests

Bharti Airtel, India’s leading telecom operator on Saturday said that it is providing additional points of interconnections (PoIs) to Jio 4G following bilateral discussions earlier this week. With the latest augmentation, the total number of PoIs provided will become three times the present number of PoIs with capacity sufficient to serve over 15 million customers, which is much more than Jio’s total subscriber base.

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The telco said that both the telcos will now have to jointly undertake the physical connection and testing of the PoIs. “Consequent to successful testing of the PoIs, these will be opened for traffic,” the Sunil Mittal-led telco said.
Airtel said that it has ensured that there are no capacity constraints from its end to Jio. The telco has claimed it has been providing PoIs to Jio, well ahead of the commencement of its commercial operations.

Airtel revealed that it received payments from Jio for additional PoIs in parts on September 15, 2016 and September 16, 2016.

“While the interconnect agreement provides for a commissioning period of 90 days from the day Reliance Jio makes the payment, Airtel will work towards releasing the PoIs well ahead of the contractual obligation. We hope Jio will extend its full cooperation to ensure timely testing and commissioning of the POIs,” Airtel said in a statement.

India’s leading telecom operator by subscribers reiterated that “it is a responsible organization committed to complying with the regulations and the Interconnect Agreements in letter and spirit and will continue to be so.”

Airtel earlier claimed that it was incurring increasing costs due to an asymmetry of traffic of 14.5 times between its network and Jio. It had said that the real cost of termination is significantly higher than the current interconnect settlement charge of 14 paise per minute as prescribed in the present IUC regime.

Vodafone and Idea had also alleged that they were suffering losses on each call made to their network from Jio at a call termination charge of 14 paise per minute. Both of these telcos however have agreed to augment the PoIs to Jio.

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