With every passing day, we are inching towards the launch of BSNL 4G services. As part of its revival package provided by the government, BSNL will launch 4G services next year after receiving spectrum from the DoT. The first step after reviving both BSNL and MTNL is to provide the Voluntary Retirement Scheme (VRS). More than 90,000 BSNL and MTNL employees have opted for VRS across the country which makes up for the largest-ever mass retirement. Now, the focus will shift towards merging BSNL and MTNL, followed by the 4G services launch in 20 telecom circles where the former is operating. The DoT is said to allocate 4G spectrum to BSNL from April 1, after which we will see the telco launching high-speed internet services over the next 19 months.
BSNL 4G Spectrum Allocation to Happen from April 1
The reason behind BSNL not launching 4G services is the lack of spectrum allocation from the government. Despite not having 4G services, the state-run telco fought hard with private telcos and became the only telco besides Reliance Jio to add subscribers since 2016. BSNL’ subscriber base now stands at over 120 million and the launch of 4G services will only increase it further. As per a recent report, BSNL to start receiving 4G spectrum from April 1, which the company will make use of over the next 19 months to provide high-speed internet services to the users. BSNL was initially said to launch 5G services directly, but that isn’t happening because private telcos are ridden with debt right now.
BSNL 4G: Where It is Available Currently?
BSNL did not give up and launched 4G services in various parts of the country using the existing 3G spectrum. For instance, Kerala is BSNL’ biggest telecom circle with over 15 million active users; In this circle, the government-owned PSU has been providing 4G services since 2017. The telco achieved it by shutting down 3G services, so BSNL Kerala users in select regions are now able to use just 4G or 2G technologies from BSNL.
Besides Kerala, we have already reported that BSNL 4G is available in major parts of Andhra Pradesh & Telangana, Chennai & Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Gujarat and Kolkata. We can confirm BSNL 4G availability in the said places but do let us know about the service availability in other circles by commenting below. To experience BSNL 4G service, customers will have to get a new BSNL 4G SIM card by heading over the nearest support centre.
BSNL 4G Plans Offer 10GB Data per Day and Start at Rs 96
A few days ago, we reported the availability of BSNL 4G tariff plans in circles where the telco is currently offering the service. BSNL has just two 4G plans at this moment priced at Rs 96 and Rs 236, and they offer 10GB daily data for 28 and 84 days respectively. This essentially means the Rs 236 prepaid plan comes with 840GB of data for three months, more than the data benefit offered by even Reliance Jio.
Once the telco launches 4G services commercially, we will get updated BSNL 4G plans. We are not expecting BSNL to convert the existing 3G plans to 4G as they beat the competition with ease. For example, BSNL’s Rs 187 prepaid recharge is now offering 3GB data per day for 28 days, and if the plan converts to a 4G one, it will provide 84GB of 4G data under Rs 200 itself.