A few days back Aditya Birla Group Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla acknowledged the threat of Reliance Jio and said that its entry would create an upset for all the existing telecom operators. Now, Airtel Chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal has acknowledged the same threat.
“When you have a new entrant with such deep pockets, then that is bound to happen…The sector will, however, see a lot of changes next year,” said Birla.
Sunil Mittal has said that entry of Reliance Jio into the telecom sector would lead to “massive erosion of tariffs”. This is because of the fact that there are widespread rumours about dirt cheap data tariff plans for Reliance Jio. Mittal also said that Jio’s entry would a pressure to reduce tariffs thus eroding the profit margin.
According to some news Jio would offer 75 GB data for Rs. 200.
Recently Jio recently revealed that it has reached a subscriber base of 7 lakh who on an average used 18.6 GB/month. Thus the operator served 13 petabytes of data.
It is expected that Reliance Jio would start its commercial operations by the end of the year however some reports suggest that the launch may happen by September itself. It is worth noting that as of now Jio is bundling free 3 month unlimited 4G data and 4500 minutes voice minutes along with its LYF branded phones.
Sunil Mittal also expects that the market consolidation will pick up pace very soon and by the next 2 years only 4 telecom operators would remain. With these 4 telecom operators he hinted at private telecom operators like Airtel, Vodafone, Idea, and Reliance Jio, expect public telcos like BSNL and MTNL.
“Besides BSNL/MTNL, I expect only four operators to remain in 24 months,” Mittal added.
As of now Reliance Communications is leading the consolidation drive by acquiring the spectrum of MTS. RCom is also very close to merging with Aircel in future. Airtel has acquired Videocon and would merge its spectrum in near future.
It is not just the mobile subscribers who are awaiting Jio launch, but even the leading telcos are waiting for its commercial launch. The tariff plans and the marketing strategy of Jio would decide the further course of Indian telecom industry.
We are keeping a close watch on the developments about Jio and RCom 4G deployment. Stay tuned!