4G is slowly making a headway into India, after a hopeful start with first Kolkata and then Bengaluru, recently. Now while it may be some time before the entire nation is dotted by 4G services, 3G continues to grab headlines and more so now, after a slew of telcos are reportedly eyeing the prospect of slashing 3G tariffs in the country, following Airtel. A report by Financial Chronicle now confirms that a cut in the tariffs of 3G in the country is in the offing. The report confirms that not only is a cut in the 3G tariffs inevitable, but also that it will be announced soon. The new tariffs, according to the report, although not made public at the moment will be competitive “vis-a-vis the rates announced by Airtel”. Bharti Airtel is creating ripples in the space when they announced their revised 3G tariffs. The entire break-up of tariffs can be viewed in the image below.
Airtel's revised 3G plans
Airtel said its lowest costing plan now offers 30 minutes of high speed internet browsing for Rs 10 against its earlier offering of 10 MB at the same rate. It has raised data download on existing plans. For instance, on a recharge of Rs 100, prepaid customers will now get 300 MB of data download against their earlier entitlement of 200 MB.
Another player in the crowded market, Aircel, too has already slashed its 3G tariffs. The company, however, is yet to officially announce the same, and they will do that shortly. Quoting a company official, the report added, “We did a soft-launch of the new prices and a formal announcement will come in soon.” The official, however, further added saying that the reductions in tariffs would be on an operator-to-consumer basis and hence should not be taken on an operator-to-operator competitive basis. Voicing similar plans, an official from Idea Cellular, too was quoted by the report as saying, “A reduction in 3G prices is likely and the company is currently working on new schemes.“
Airtel in an official statement also added that, “Airtel has also introduced Smartbytes additional data usage packs for its postpaid Airtel mobile customers on 3G – thus becoming the first in the market to offer customers with the choice of subscribing to incremental 3G data usage packs. With Airtel 3G Smartbytes, postpaid mobile customers will now be able to continue enjoying uninterrupted access to high speed browsing on their mobile devices even after exhausting their monthly data limits. The Smartbytes additional data usage packs are available in a range of predetermined price options that allow Airtel 3G customers to choose a plan that suits their needs, while avoiding any bill shocks.”
Idea Cellular's revised 3G tariffs
Idea Cellular, according to an official statement have now followed suit and have announced a reduction in 3G tariffs by a whopping 70 percent. Idea prepaid & postpaid customers will now pay 3p/10 KB of data, a reduction of 70 percent from the earlier levels of 10p/10KB.
Sashi Shankar, CMO, Idea Cellular stated, “We have been a pioneer in 3G since inception and with these new prices; Idea has brought 3G within the reach of the masses. I am confident that new prices will generate a lot of trial and will drive off take. Our new sachet packs of Rs 10 & HERO-25 are aimed at youngsters who will access high speed internet on-the-go without worrying about the expense.“