MVNO stands for mobile virtual network operator (MVNO). In a country such as India, MVNOs can play a huge role in the growth of the digital economy. MVNOs can serve both in the B2B as well as the B2C model. But before we understand how MVNOs are going to help India, it is important to understand what they are in the first place.
What is an MVNO?
MVNOs aren’t your regular telecom service providers. However, they behave as if they are. MVNOs sell subscription plans to users with data, voice calling, and SMS benefits. Some also offer entertainment subscriptions to over-the-top (OTT) platforms.
What MVNOs do is they purchase the wireless capacity from MNOs (mobile network operators) and resell it to the consumers under their brand. MVNOs have their own customer care team, branding team, custom products, sales and distribution channels.
An MVNO and MNO differ in one major way – MVNOs don’t have direct access to the radio spectrum. MVNOs need to lease it from the MNOs under a wholesale agreement.
MVNOs in India, What You Should Know
To become an MVNO in India, the company first needs to obtain a license from the government for the same. For an MVNO to be successful, the company needs to enter into a wholesale agreement with an MNO. These agreements can be complex and might need a lot of expertise to negotiate.
Further, an MVNO requires a solid and reliable technology platform to offer mobile products to customers. Thus, a technology partner must be chosen very carefully by an MVNO. An unreliable technology platform can result in a bad reputation and a loss of money.
How Can MVNOs Help India in Becoming a Better Digital Economy?
There are a lot of areas in our country where regular MNOs don’t want to go and offer services. This is because the cost to reward ratio just doesn’t match in such areas. But this is where MVNOs can step in and take the baton from the MNOs.
MVNOs can customise their offerings to reduce the cost of services and thus offer affordable services in rural India, where MNOs don’t want to go. MVNOs don’t have to worry about a lot of costs that MNOs need to. Thus, they can break even faster than MNOs in rural parts of the country.
MVNOs are a concept that a lot of regular Indian consumers aren’t aware of. But these companies are going to grow as the need for digital connectivity increases.
MNOs have a lot of unused capacity, which can be leased out to MVNOs. This would help MNOs to maximise revenues and utilise unused assets.