Jio is likely to commercially launch 4G services this October, which would trigger at least a 30% fall in data tariffs, boosting overall mobile data subscriptions in the next 9-12 months, according to a report by Economic Times. Brokerage HSBC expects Jio's entry to result in a sharp correction in data tariffs. It said that data realisation per MB will fall from an industry average of 25 paise last year to 15 paise by calendar 2018.
Another brokerage CLSA said that if Jio launches services in October then it could garner 70 million 4G customers by March 2018, a 100 million by March 2019 and 150 million by March 2021, according to the report. Both HSBC and CLSA are of the view that Jio will get benefitted from the increasing 4G smartphone uptake in the country. Estimates suggest that the 4G phone population in India slated to rise to 500 million in the next five years.
"Once Jio enters, we foresee smartphone penetration increasing from 24% now to 34% in the next two years, and estimate data subscriptions seeing a 24% CAGR (compounded annual growth rate) over FY16-18," HSBC said. Reliance Jio, the telecom arm of Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Industries, recently extended the trial launch of its 4G services to the public through an invite system, driven by its group employees.
Jio has empowered the group employees, who had got the trial SIM earlier, to bring 10 more people to the 4G network through a referral invite system. The invite, which has to be sent by a RIL employee, will allow people to buy a LYF phone, which will come bundled with free unlimited 4G data and voice for three months.