Will Reliance Jio take Digital India to the next level?

By February 14th, 2015 AT 9:13 AM

With the government emphasising on Digital India, we hope that we will soon get excellent internet services. Who will be the game changer? The sector has a lot of expectations from Reliance Jio.

jio-speed-test-mumbai

In my previous articles, I have always talked about cost effective super fast internet connectivity from Jio. But I might be wrong about Jio’s Rs 10 per GB 4G data. There are reasons which I are explained below.

Jio, which owns 20 Mhz spectrum in every circle on 2.3GHz or LTE band 40 and a good amount of spectrum on 1.8GHz band in 14 circles is planning for a massive launch with its commercial 4G roll out. But the company is going slow, it seems their strategy is just at par with company’s other business like petrol chem & retail – which are quite successful on an extended run. For example Reliance Retail is now country’s largest revenue making retail chain beating old player like the Future Group & with telecom they are building a company from scratch, Jio is determined not to take any wrong step. Price disruption is not their weapon, rather service disruption will be their armour to stay afloat in the telecom space.

Retail- Telecom Synergy:
In the latest movement Sandip Das, who was the managing director of RJIL has now moved to Reliance Retail to mentor Jio devices division. We can expect Jio corners on every Reliance Digital stores (big ones, mini and mini express) to sell all Jio products. Even Reliance Retails’ loyalty program RelianceOne may be extended to Jio customers also.

Jio Apps:
Jio is betting high to create a perfect ecosystem of its own for its internet services. Their preview shows that Jio will have a pack of apps including IM app (Jio Social & Jio Friends), music streaming app(Jio Beats), video/tv on demand app. Unlimited free access on IM app will be a killer.

Mobile Payment:
e-payment over mobile will definitely be a game changer. Most of the bigger operators applied for Payment Bank gateway. Reliance Jio also applied for such in collaboration with State Bank of India. We are yet to decode all features of such Payment Banks. However, it will be a win-win for both customers & service providers.

WiFi:
Jio knows the need of WiFi as they are rolling out a relatively new technology (LTE-TDD) on a large scale. So Jio is banking upon Wifi – true or public WiFi backed by OFC and 4G WiFi routers (transform 4G signals into Wifi). They are slowly rolling out public Wifi in cities like Ahmedabad, Surat, Baroda & Kolkata.

Jio is also set to bring entertainment to your pocket or home. There was news that RIL wanted MSO license to offer cable TV-like services. RIL-Network18 deal will give Jio an edge over incumbents as Jio can deliver contents exclusively from Network18’s tv channels, newspapers and other media publications.

Similarly, education platform will be made by Jio for students. Jio made a deal with Nokia Siemens for security services solution. Jio will look into e-medicine domain also but there is no word on this.

Now back to our earlier question will Jio 4G be cheaper than 3G? I think it will be almost similarly priced but with lots of freebies for new customer acquisition. Even handsets will be subsidised in a way that doesn’t make the company bankrupt. However with Jio’s entry in 2015 operators who will acquire airwaves in the upcoming auction will not be in a position to hike tariff. We can even expect at least 20-30% drop on current 3G pricing.

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