Here’s a grand overview of the situation of data packs in the Kolkata Circle

By October 10th, 2015 AT 4:12 PM

Kolkata is one of the three metro circles, and it’s a crowded telecom zone with more than 23 million mobile connections as of July 2015. Kolkata has had a rich telecom heritage. During the British rule, the first experimental electric telegraph line was started between Kolkata (then Calcutta) and Diamond Harbour in 1850. After the country’s independence, the Chief Minister of West Bengal, Shri Jyoti Basu, ushered in the cellphone revolution in India by making the first call to Union Telecom Minister Sukhram in August 1995. Sixteen years later (in 2012), India’s first 4G services were launched in Kolkata.

5G-speed-india

The circle has an active connection or VLR rate of 91.61 percent. Vodafone has the best and most robust network here, which helped them in gaining the first rank in terms of subscriber base, while Airtel, Aircel, and Reliance Mobile have almost similar subscriber figures. These networks have both 3G and basic 2G services. On the other hand, Airtel has 4G network, which was deployed as India’s first 4G LTE network, and it is rapidly expanding it to counter the upcoming threat from Reliance Jio & Vodafone’s 4G services.

As a lot of consumers use data services these days, operators are rapidly changing their data packs, which became a reason of confusion. To the end this confusion, we have decided to share the cheapest data packs of the Kolkata circle along with information on operators’ network quality. Here is an chart that’s embedded below, which will quickly help you in getting details about subscriber figures of those wireless networks in Kolkata.

Wireless Network’s in Kolkata Circle
Operator Type Network Subscriber’s VLR Rate (in %)
Vodafone GSM 2G , 3G , (Planned -4G) 49,94,119 97.99
Airtel GSM 2G , 3G , 4G 41,96,243 95.69
Aircel GSM 2G , 3G 39,54,496 82.35
Reliance Mobile GSM + CDMA 2G , 3G , CDMA -1x , EVDO 39,54,400 98.67
TATA DOCOMO GSM + CDMA 2G , CDMA -1x , EVDO 28,40,734 79.90
Idea Cellular GSM 2G , (Planned – 3G) 19,05,624 87.63
BSNL GSM + CDMA 2G , 3G , Wimax , CDMA-1x 7,56,954 94.14
MTS CDMA CDMA- 1x , EVDO RevB 6,23,391 92.98
Total Subscriber’s & VLR Rate as of July’15 (TRAI DATA) 23,225,961 91.61

Vodafone

We have earlier shared that, Vodafone has a robust network in Kolkata whether it’s 2G or 3G. It’s the only network among private operators that is using lower band and premium quality airspace for its 2G network and 2100 MHz band for 3G services. Most of its 3G BTS are enabled to provide 21Mbps speed, but that doesn’t mean you would get the same speed as speed varies based on several terms.

Vodafone has also launched the ‘Double Data’ offer in the circle, which gives customers unmatched offers at relatively lower prices when compared to market rates. We would suggest to check Double Data offer from *121# . Vodafone offer’s Double Data on select denominations depending on a customer’s usage pattern. As it is providing the best speed in 3G, Double Data is a really good deal.

Here are the other offers that one can choose from Vodafone.

Vodafone Data Packs details Kolkata Circle
  • 2G Packs
Price Benefits
Rs 27 100 MB 2G Data for 3 Days
Rs 34 175 MB 2G Data for 5 Days
Rs 52 250 MB 2G Data for 7 Days
Rs 69 350 MB 2G Data for 10 Days
Rs 101 500 MB 2G Data for 14 Days
Rs 155 750 MB 2G Data for 21 Days
Rs 179 1 GB 2G Data for 28 Days
Rs 196 1.25 GB 2G Data for 28 Days
Rs 246 3 GB 2G Data for 28 Days
Rs 591 6 GB 2G Data for 90 Days
  • 3G Packs
Price Benefits
Rs 42 150 MB 3G data for 7 Days
Rs 103 200 MB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 147 500 MB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 251 1 GB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 451 2 GB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 651 3 GB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 851 5 GB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 951 6 GB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 1251 12 GB 3G data for 28 Days
Rs 1501 15 GB 3G data for 28 Days

Airtel

Bharti Airtel has 4G, 3G, and 2G networks across the Kolkata circle, but their 4G network is limited in some key areas. When it comes to 3G, they have a robust 3G network, which might not be as fast as Vodafone’s 3G, but its coverage is great with clear sound quality for voice calls. Airtel is promoting 4G as well as their 3G (as ‘Platinum 3G’), and encouraging users to use 4G by introducing ‘4G at 3G prices’ .

Airtel Data Packs details Kolkata Circle
  • 2G Packs
Price Benefits
Rs 8 40 MB 2G data for 1 Day
Rs 18 90 MB 2G data for 1 Day
Rs 25 125 MB 2G data for 4 Days
Rs 98 500 MB 2G data for 14 Days
Rs 152 1 GB 2G data for 28 Days
Rs 198 1.25 GB 2G data for 28 Days
Rs 252 3 GB UL 2G data for 28 Days
Rs 441 3 GB 2G data for 90 Days
Rs 596 6 GB 2G data for 90 Days
  • 3G/4G Unified Data Packs
Rs 23 60 MB 3G/4G data for 3 Days
Rs 48 175 MB 3G/4G data for 7 Days
Rs 99 300 MB 3G/4G data for 14 Days
Rs 199 600 MB 3G/4G data for 28 Days
Rs 251 1 GB 3G/4G data for 28 Days
Rs 265 1 GB 3G/4G data  + Wynk Plus for 28 Days
Rs 351 1.5 GB 3G/4G data for 28 Days
Rs 449 2 GB 3G/4G data for 28 Days
Rs 652 3 GB 3G/4G data for 28 Days
Rs 749 4 GB 3G/4G UL data (speed capped after FUP at 80kbps) for 28 Days
Rs 849 5 GB 3G/4G UL data (speed capped after FUP at 80kbps) for 28 Days
Rs 949 6 GB 3G/4G UL data (speed capped after FUP at 80kbps) for 28 Days
Rs 1249 10 GB 3G/4G UL data (speed capped after FUP at 80kbps) for 28 Days
Rs 1499 12 GB 3G/4G UL data (speed capped after FUP at 80kbps) for 28 Days

Aircel

Aircel has the third largest subscriber base on its 2G & 3G networks. When it comes to 2G, they are offering good speeds if you have a 3G-enabled smartphone, and if you choose their 3G network while having a 2G pack. It also offers unified data packs which can be used on both 2G & 3G networks. The telco is increasing BTSes to reach out the new zones.

As of now, they have cheapest 3G data packs, but regular users doesn’t get customised 3G or 2G offer if they use usual packs, which is a drawback as the market leader Vodafone is providing Double Data on recharges. Cheapest data & calling rates were the main reason which helped the company in attract a huge subscriber base in a short tenure after Uninor’s network closure.

Aircel Data Pack Details Kolkata Circle
  • 2G/3G Unified Packs
Rs 8 40 MB 3G/2G data for 1 Day
Rs 23 100 MB 3G/2G data for 3 Days
Rs 39 180 MB 3G/2G data for 5 Days
Rs 67 580 MB 3G/2G data for 5 Days
Rs 78 500 MB 3G/2G UL data for 5 Days
Rs 155 1 GB 3G/2G data for 21 Days
Rs 175 1 GB 3G/2G data for 26 Days
Rs 198 1.25 GB 3G/2G data for 28 Days
Rs 275 1.75 GB 3G/2G data for 28 Days
Rs 399 3 GB 3G/2G data for 28 Days
Rs 697 6 GB 3G/2G data for 28 Days
Rs 999 10 GB 3G/2G data for 28 Days
Rs 1397 15 GB 3G/2G data for 28 Days
  • 2G Value Packs
Rs 27 180 MB 2G Data for 5 Days
Rs 128 1 GB 2G Data for 21 Days
Rs 148 1.25 GB 2G Data for 28 Days

Reliance Mobile

Anil Ambani-owned telco has its presence in the Kolkata circle through CDMA & GSM technologies. The telco provides both 3G & 2G services under the GSM standard. However, it’s CDMA customer base is decreasing, and it lacks EVDO Rev. B in the circle, which has forced it to sell 3G Data Dongles to counter data-focused player like MTS. MTS has Rev. B services, and it advertises itself as a ‘3G Plus Network’.

At present, the network has issues on both 2G & 3G services. Many people are complaining about their services as QoS of their services is decreasing day by day. However, one can use Aircel network as they both have a network tie-up, but that works only on 2G. Their 3G network is wider than Aircel but constant average speed is below average. Their cheap data products are the reason why people still use it.

Reliance Mobile Data Packs Kolkata Circle details 
  • 2G Packs
Price Benefits
Rs 5 30 MB 2G Data for 1 Day
Rs 18 100 MB 2G Data for 3 Days
Rs 27 200 MB 2G Data for 5 Days
Rs 45 400 MB 2G Data for 7 Days
Rs 68 800 MB 2G Data for 10 Days
Rs 99 650 MB 2G Data for 14 Days
Rs 125 1 GB 2G Data for 21 Days
Rs 149 2 GB 2G Data for 28 Days
Rs 175 3 GB 2G Data for 28 Days
Rs 195 Unlimited 2G for 28 Days
  • 3G Packs
Rs 38 200 MB 3G Data for 7 Days
Rs 58 500 MB 3G Data for 2 Days
Rs 84 400 MB 3G data for 7 Days
Rs 95 750 MB 3G data for 10 Days
Rs 97 300 MB 3G data for 30 Days
Rs 116 2 GB 3G data for 2 Days
Rs 123 400 Mb 3G + 30 Rs TT For 30 Days
Rs 124 1 GB 3G data for 10 Days
Rs 156 800 MB Data 3G for 21 Days
Rs 177 1 GB Data 3G for 26 Days
Rs 198 1.5 GB Data 3G for 28 Days
Rs 246 2 GB Data 3G for 28 Days
Rs 297 2.5 GB Data 3G for 28 Days
Rs 492 3 GB Data 3G for 30 Days
  • Dongle + Mobile 3G Packs
Rs 98 1 GB 3G Data for 2 Days
Rs 173 1 GB UL 3G Data for 7 Days
Rs 255 1 GB UL 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 375 3.5 GB UL 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 449 2 GB 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 649 6.5 GB 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 797 5 GB 3G UL Data for 30 Days
Rs 1099 10 GB 3G UL Data for 30 Days
Rs 1299 15 GB 3G UL Data for 30 Days

Idea Cellular

Idea entered in the Kolkata circle in 2009, and it has been rapidly expanded its 2G network since then. As a result of Supreme Court’s verdict in 2012, its license quashed along with other operator’s licenses. After that, Idea bought some spectrum, and it now has a wide presence, thanks to its Indus towers venture where it holds 8 percent stake. Operators like Vodafone and Airtel are offering quality network, while Aircel & Reliance are providing cheap tariffs, so Idea gets unnoticed even if it offers cheap rates.

You can get a clear picture of that if you look at their ARPU in Kolkata, With 18 lakh users in the quarter of January, it has an ARPU of just Rs. 47.35, where market leader Vodafone has ARPU of Rs. 196.64. As of now, it is providing 3G through ICRA agreement with Vodafone, but speed are capped, so users prefer using Vodafone or Airtel & Aircel’s network as they provide good speeds. In the last auction, the Aditya Birla-owned telco also arranged 3G spectrum, which they will use in rolling out its own 3G network across the circle.

Idea Data Data pack Kolkata Circle
  • 2G Packs
Rs 16 80 MB 2G Data for 3 Days
Rs 28 140 MB 2G Data for 4 Days
Rs 47 235 MB 2G Data for 7 Days
Rs 58 300 MB 2G Data for 8 Days
Rs 98 500 MB 2G Data for 14 Days
Rs 125 625 MB 2G Data for 18 Days
Rs 179 1 GB 2G Data for 30 Days
Rs 199 1.25 GB 2G UL Data for 30 Days
Rs 249 3 GB 2G UL Data for 30 Days
  • 3G Packs
Rs 51 200 MB 3G Data for 6 Days
Rs 103 300 MB 3G Data for 28 Days
Rs 169 500 MB 3G Data for 28 Days
Rs 251 1 GB 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 352 1.5 GB 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 451 2 GB 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 1251 4 GB 3G Data for 90 Days
Rs 1501 10 GB 3G Data for 30 Days
Rs 649 3 GB 3G UL Data for 30 Days
Rs 751 4 GB 3G UL Data for 30 Days
Rs 851 5 GB 3G UL Data for 30 Days
Rs 951 3 GB 3G UL Data for 30 Days

Tata DoCoMo

Tata Sons-owned telecom unit has CDMA & 2G based GSM services in Kolkata. Earlier, it gained a lot of users as time they were providing cheap tariffs and unlimited voice calls. However, after the data surge, it lost customers due to lack of proper data network, while Aircel won consumer’s hearts for their dirt cheap rates and unlimited voice call offers.

Aircel also has a 3G network, and stiff competition from Airtel and Vodafone are the reasons why the DoCoMo is losing customers. Virgin Mobile, which was popular among youths for free data & voice offerings, was merged into Tata DoCoMo.

TATA Docomo Data Packs of Kolkata Circle
Price Benefits
  • GSM 2G Packs
Rs 8 40 MB data for 1 Day
Rs 15 80 MB data for 3 Day
Rs 32 170 MB data for 5 Days
Rs 65 350 MB data for 10 Days
Rs 66 300 MB data for 28 Days
Rs 95 750 MB data for 21 Days
Rs 126 1 GB data for 30 Days
Rs 149 1.5 GB data for 30 Days
Rs 249 2.5 GB data for 30 Days
  • CDMA Data Packs
Rs 126 1 GB data for 30 Days
Rs 256 2 GB data for 30 Days
Rs 95 500 MB data for 30 Days

BSNL Mobile

The state-run Calcutta Telephones provides BSNL Mobile services in 2G and 3G, and it recently decided to shut down CDMA Voice & 1x services. BSNL was the fist company to launch 3G services in the city, but their network is not upto mark. Signals drop frequently, and sometimes the signal vanishes away.

The telco lacks market distribution network, and its user base is just 9 lakhs even after combining all its wireless services . Even after providing cheap rates, consumers don’t want to use their service due to their low quality service.

BSNL Data Packs of Kolkata Circle
Price Benefits
Rs 17 90 MB 3G/2G Data for 2 Days
Rs 39 200 MB 3G/2G Data for 6 Days
Rs 68 1 GB 3G/2G Data for 5 Days
Rs 98 650 MB 3G/2G Data for 14 Days
Rs 155 1 GB 3G/2G Data for 20 Days
Rs 198 1.1 GB 3G/2G Data for 28 Days
Rs 251 2.2 GB 3G/2G Data for 28 Days

MTS India

Sistema’s local unit is providing CDMA data and voice services under the MTS brand in the Kolkata circle. It has Rev. B data network in the circle, which the network advertises as ‘3G Plus Network’. As there aren’t popular CDMA handsets in the market, the company chose the Wi-Fi platform to attract new customers.

The company is currently providing Wi-Fi dongles, but the ‘3G plus network’ lags behind Vodafone’s HSPA+ 3G (21.1 Mbps) network in real-time. You can see their data packs for CDMA data services on mobile phones in the chart below.

MTS Data Packs of Kolkata Circle
Packs Benefits
Rs 248 1 GB Data for 28 Days
Rs 299 1.5 GB Data for 28 Days
Rs 399 3 GB Data for 28 Days
Rs 499 5 GB Data for 28 Days
Rs 1599 18 GB Data for 90 Days

We would like to request you to verify these data packs with you respective customer care numbers if you are planning to recharge those denominations. Also, kindly share your views.

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Jyotirmoy MannaroperSudhakarSanjit RoySayan Recent comment authors
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roper
roper

why do you mention bsnl as 1x-CDMA whereas i’ve using their unlimited EvDo @750/per month for quite a few years now. While EVDO coverage is not as universal as GSM/3g coverage, yet they offer at least in most district headquarters.

Jyotirmoy Manna
Jyotirmoy Manna

Once I checked a few months ego. Nos. of evdo towers are very low.

Jagannath
Jagannath

I am an AVoId user (Vodafone Postpaid & Airtel Prepaid) . After reading some positive reviews of BSNL here at TT, I thought of giving it a try. Locating a BSNL Kolkata office and getting a sim before 4pm (which is when their offices close) was a pain. Anyways, I managed to get one. Now comming to their network, their coverage is decent but not at par with AVoId (No coverage inside metro stations, poor coverage in buildings). I also recharged with a data pack but unfortunately BSNL does not have an HSPA network here (Only basic 3G i.e. UMTS… Read more »

jyotirmoy manna
jyotirmoy manna

In recent times ,in my sphere you are the only person who gave bsnl a try though possess a voda and AIRTEL connection.
I had 3 sim s of bsnl though now 2 , one post- and the other prepaid.
Trying to limit it to onen

S Gopal
S Gopal

Cross over into Odisha to Lord Jagannath’s territory (BSNL Puri SSA ) to see BSNL’s networks consistent speeds and lack of dead cellular signal zones. The difference is felt as soon as you enter the very first railway station and town, Lakshmanath Road and H+ signals are available from Jaleshwar onwards such as the towns of Balasore, Bhadrak and the colonial capital Cuttack and the modern capital Bhubaneswar and down to Puri. Not online the beaches and temple sublime and serene but also BSNL’s services. By the way, BSNL Odisha is for s one of the few circles that is… Read more »

Jagannath
Jagannath

Yes, I have heard BSNL Odisha has very good coverage and good 3G speeds as well (3-5Mbps constantly as told by some of my friends from Odisha). In fact, it was the only 3G network I found in Konark, during my visit to the state some time back.

Sudhakar
Sudhakar

Well said.

jyotirmoy manna
jyotirmoy manna

Thanks for the detailed review of bsnl Odisha along rail route to and in Puri.

Airtel Lover
Airtel Lover

That’s the truth ! Thanks for your unbiased reporting of this fact.

S Gopal
S Gopal

It may be the truth, but there exists a conflict of interest, after all the person is and remains a user of a certain service provider who is not enticed enough by permanently switching to another operator. While overwhelmingly the switch is not undertaken due to the network issues (in agreement on that), however, there comes a level of inertia and self-belief that ones own operator will be better than another. Had the user been say been an Aircel user and tested BSNL and Airtel and then come to a conclusion that BSNL is sub-part to Airtel then only would… Read more »

Airtel Lover
Airtel Lover

Conflict of interest will always be there, because one can not avoid avoid !

S Gopal
S Gopal

I do think you speak for all and sundry when you state that one cannot exist without being a patron of the three mobile operator. It will be not so pleasant surprise that there are many subscribers who are not with woolly BSNL and yet are also not patrons of the three mobile operators and find that they and their operator are in harmony with each other. Aircel customers in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Odisha and Assam, Reliance GSM users in Odisha, Assam amongst others, apart from BSNL users in many circles notably, Jammu and Kashmir, Chennai, Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Odisha,… Read more »

S Gopal
S Gopal

Pardon, I meant that I do not think you speak for all and sundry when you state that one cannot exist without being a patron of at least on of the three mobile operators.

Jagannath
Jagannath

I have used Aircel, Tata Docomo (GSM & CDMA both), Reliance (both GSM & CDMA) and other operators as well. Aircel, Docomo have good coverage in selected cities only. One can experience the same while travelling in a train. The network goes on and off constantly or simply latches on to Vodafone or Idea. It is good as a secondary sim if you stay at a place and don’t travel a lot. As far as Tata CDMA is concerned, their network is very poor except in major cities. They are scaling down operations and it is hard to even find… Read more »

JYOTIRMOY MANNA
JYOTIRMOY MANNA

Perfect observation and analysis, I think.
It is our bad luck that cdma frequency is going to be used for 4G. Probably ,EVDO service is being shut down for this.

S Gopal
S Gopal

While travelling with Indian Railway possibly Airtel might have a better network than BSNL ( personally can’t distinguish between the two as both are dependable operators while travelling by train) on account of being the CUG connection provider for anyone associated with Indian Railways from the Hon. Rail Minister, to Railway Board to the Group D personnel of the Indian Raikway.

Sudhakar
Sudhakar

All the best for airtel to shutdown in India.

Jagannath
Jagannath

However, I have seen that BSNL is the only operator found (sometimes along with Airtel/Voda) in remote locations if you ever happen to visit such tourist places. For eg. Interior places in and around Arakku Valley, the route to Nathula Pass, Munnar e.t.c. and I hope private operators will cover more such places soon.

S Gopal
S Gopal

True, BSNL remains the lifeline for remote areas in the Western Ghats region of Karnataka, although Airtel has really improved its network in the last decade, however, it still is a wee bit short in terms of coverage to BSNL.

Same is the scenario in parts of Chhattisgarh-Madhya Pradesh border area in places in and around Amarkantak, Shahdol district.

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