Reliance Jio is currently ruling the Indian telecom market, thanks to its affordable tariff plans and LTE-only network service. And a new report now says the telecom operator will continue leading the telecom sector for another two years, despite the not-so-impressive tariff plans. According to Centrum Institutional Research, Reliance Jio's monthly subscriber addition will come down moderately, however, the telco will retain its top spot owing to the impressive 4G network coverage. For the unaware, Jio is currently leading the Indian telecom market with over 350 million subscribers and it's actively adding more than eight million subscribers every month. But the FUP limit on off-net calls with the new tariff plans may not go in Jio's favour this time around.
Reliance Jio Will Retain its Top Spot for Another 2 Years
Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Jio recently dethroned Vodafone Idea Limited to become India's leading telecom operator in terms of subscriber base. Reliance Jio reported its lowest-ever subscriber addition of eight million a few months ago and this stat reveals how dominant the telecom operator is. But Centrum Institutional Research believes that Jio's aggressive subscriber addition will be slowed down as the telco will likely add 5.5 million to 6.5 million new users every month in the coming quarters.
“Jio’s dominant position in terms of market share growth and data usage will sustain comfortably for the next 18-24 months, given its superior data speeds and 4G network coverage, even post change in tariffs,” Centrum Institutional Research said in a note, as reported by ET Telecom.
Right now, Reliance Jio is adding more than eight million subscribers a month, averaging over 27 million subscribers per quarter. Nevertheless, the number will soon come down despite Reliance Jio providing the cheapest prepaid plans in the country even now.
Reliance Jio' subscriber base gets a boost every month with the help of JioPhone. Yes, the affordably priced 4G feature phone helped the telco add 70 million subscribers till October this year. With the removal of Rs 49 JioPhone plan, it will be tough for Reliance Jio to convince the people and the Rs 75 plan comes with FUP limit for off-net calls. We're eagerly waiting to see the December 2019 data from Reliance Jio and its quarterly performance as well.
Earlier this month, Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel raised prepaid tariff prices by a decent margin, but Reliance Jio still has the edge. For instance, Jio's 84-day plan is 7% cheaper than the same plan from Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea.
FUP Limit on Off-Net Calls Will Hurt Reliance Jio Badly
There's no doubt that Reliance Jio is still offering the cheapest prepaid plans in the industry, however, incumbents now have an upper hand. For the unaware, Reliance Jio is limiting the outgoing voice calls to other networks, whereas there's no such limitation on Airtel and Vodafone Idea networks though.
Consider this example, Jio's Rs 199 prepaid plan with 1.5GB daily data comes with just 1,000 non-Jio FUP minutes which is underwhelming. On the flip side, Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel are charging Rs 249 for the same plan, but providing unlimited outgoing voice calls without any terms and conditions.
On top of that, Reliance Jio is not bundling any off-net voice calls with the Rs 98 prepaid offering, so customers will have to rely on the Top-Up vouchers to make outgoing calls to other networks like Airtel, Vodafone Idea, BSNL and MTNL.