Reliance Jio has stopped the tariff protection service which we spotted a few days ago on the company's website. With the help of Jio's tariff protection service, prepaid customers were able to get the previous plans and not the newly launched plans. However, the service is no longer available, meaning every Jio prepaid user will now have to recharge the newly launched prepaid plans itself. For the unaware, Reliance Jio increased prepaid plan prices earlier this month and it's also losing the battle to incumbent telcos by charging the off-net voice calls. Jio allowed its prepaid users who are not on any active plan to avail the old prepaid plans itself via tariff protection service. The new unlimited plans from Reliance Jio with bundled off-net voice minutes start at Rs 129, whereas the same plans from Vodafone Idea and Airtel start at Rs 149.
Jio Removes Tariff Protection Service with Immediate Effect
When it commercially launched LTE-only services back in 2016, Reliance Jio promised that it would provide the best tariff plans in the industry. After announcing the price hike recently, Jio silently allowed its prepaid users who are not on an active plan to avail the old recharge plans itself. For example, Jio's prepaid customers got the Rs 149 plan even after the tariff hike and the plan offered them 1.5GB data per day, unlimited Jio-to-Jio voice calling and 100 SMSes per day for 28 days. Some Jio customers even recharged the Rs 1,699 yearly prepaid plan whose price has now been increased to Rs 2,199 (available at Rs 2,020 for a limited period).
As mentioned above, the tariff protection was available only to Jio's prepaid customers who are not on any active prepaid plan. For example, if you are already on an active prepaid recharge, then you will not be able to avail the tariff protection service.
When we checked for the tariff protection service today on a non-active Jio number, the feature is not available. We have checked for the tariff protection service in a couple of other non-active Jio numbers as well. Even some of TelecomTalk readers also complained about the absence of the service.
Every Jio Prepaid Customer Will Have to Recharge New Plans Only
The removal of tariff protection means every Jio prepaid customer will have to recharge the newly launched plans. The new Jio prepaid plans start at the same Rs 98, but the plans with bundled off-net calling start at Rs 129. On the same note, Reliance Jio is still charging six paise per minute for off-net calls, whereas Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea are providing unlimited voice calls without any charges.
Thanks to the six paise IUC, Reliance Jio may start losing subscribers as Airtel and Vodafone Idea will likely gain. Just a few days ago, we reported that Airtel managed to add 12 million customers in October and November months. Airtel's net additions per month over the last few months was just around 1.5 million, but it has seen a rapid rise. For the uninitiated, Jio introduced IUC Top-Up vouchers in October this year.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Trai) is yet to reveal the November 2019 subscriber data, but the information regarding Airtel's numbers was provided by a company's official itself. It will be interesting to see how Reliance Jio' subscriber additions would be.