Indian GSM telcos accuse Jio of poaching customers under trial launch: Report

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Indian GSM telecom operators have reportedly claimed that Reliance Jio is trying to poach their customers under the test launch through number portability service and new connections with free bundled voice and data offers, and asked the 4G entrant to reveal its commercial launch plan. The telcos have also urged the telecom department and the Trai to bring clarity on a test mode conditions.


The COAI represents incumbent GSM telcos like Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular and other telcos like Telenor and Aircel. Notably, Reliance Jio is also a member of the association.

“If you are going after my customer, and offering MNP and soliciting things and sending SIM cards with freebies. You can’t have a quote unquote trail period for 6 months. It is looking pretty much commercial launch to us,” COAI’s director general Rajan S Mathews was quoted as saying by the Economic Times.

The Mukesh Ambani-led 4G telecom operator had earlier said that incumbent operators were deliberately not providing it adequate access points to terminate its calls/data, thereby forcing it to delay its commercial launch.

Mathews however again reiterated that Jio was choking networks of other telecom operators with the help of it 1.5 million customers that are generating huge data and voice traffic. He said that Jio could have done load testing within its network as its network is claimed to have capacity to handle around 100 million customers initially. “We don’t discomfort by pushing traffic to someone else’s network.

The COAI also made clear that unless Jio doesn’t start commercial service; other GSM telcos are under no obligation to give additional E1s.

“Currently it’s an impasse with neither of party ready to blink. And both parties are suffering. The quicker DoT and Trai come to some conclusion the better is for everybody else,” Mathews said.

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