In the last two years, the Indian telecom industry has undergone a significant change thanks to the entry of Reliance Jio, the Mukesh Ambani led telecom operator, which introduced extremely cheap data and calling prepaid plans for the subscribers. The other telcos followed on the same footsteps and introduced similar packs for their customers which ship daily data with FUP limits bundled with unlimited calling and SMS options. These unlimited data/calling plans became an instant hit with the consumers. But there was one catch, although Reliance Jio and Bharti Airtel were providing genuinely unlimited calling to their subscribers. Vodafone and Idea Cellular, which have now merged their operations, were not providing unlimited calling and had put a weekly and daily cap for prepaid customers. Now in its latest move, Vodafone Idea has revoked the max cap set on calling for both Vodafone and Idea subscribers. Idea Cellular is sending out an SMS to its subscribers on unlimited combo plan stating the removal of FUP limit.
No More FUP Limit on Voice Calling for Vodafone Idea Prepaid Customers
Up until now, the calling FUP for Vodafone and Idea subscribers was kept at 250 minutes daily and 1000 minutes weekly. When the subscribers exhausted their calling FUP limit, they were charged at 1.2 paise per second or Re 1 per minute. As noted, Idea Cellular is informing its subscribers about this change via an SMS as you can see in the image below. Vodafone India, on the other hand, has implemented the change, but the telco is not sending any text message to the subscribers. We have reached out to Vodafone customer service portal and they've confirmed the change. This change from Vodafone Idea is applicable from January 10 in some circles. In some circles, it will get effective in the next few days.
Vodafone Idea Implements Minimum Recharge Scheme
Back in October, Vodafone and Idea Cellular had introduced minimum recharge plans starting at Rs 35 which comes with 28 days validity and some talk time. These minimum recharge plans go as high as Rs 265, which comes with 84 days validity and full talk time. There are also other bundled plans starting from Rs 169, Rs 199, Rs 399 and they go as high as Rs 799 offering local and STD unlimited calling with daily data limits of 4.5GB and up to 90 days validity. There are also 100 SMS per day benefits. Further, Vodafone Idea has also done away with the blackout days meaning that users will be able to make use of these benefits even during holidays like Diwali, Christmas, Holi etc. and they won’t be charged on the standard rates for the SMS which they send.
As per a new report, we now also know that the introduction of the minimum recharges has not really dented the subscriber base of Vodafone Idea as much as the companies expected. Like Vodafone Idea forecasts, the minimum recharges are expected to increase the ARPU and show the results by the end of the FY19.