Will Reliance Jio launch 4G services on August 15?

Reliance Jio 4G launch ready
Reliance Jio is gearing up to launch the much hyped 4G services on August 15, said Bank of America Merrill Lynch in a report.

The Reliance Industries subsidiary is expected to offer unlimited VoLTE voice bundled with its data offering above Rs 300 per month. Vodafone, Idea Cellular and Bharti Airtel have announced their new data pricing in the recent weeks anticipating the launch by Reliance Jio.

“When Reliance Jio commercially launches its telecom services (expected on August 15) we expect the company to offer a differentiated offering. In our view, it will be unlimited VoLTE voice bundled with its data offering above Rs 300 per month,” said Bank of America Merrill Lynch in a report.

The report said there will be pressure on voice revenues and tariff hikes. VoLTE voice will not impact Indian telecom industry’s voice revenues for the next 12-18 months.

International telecom industry body GSA says 150 operators have launched HD voice service in 87 countries, including 40 VoLTE deployments. Telecom network operators are investing in VoLTE enabling an HD voice experience for LTE users. There are 430 VoLTE devices including 401 smartphones across all price points.

As per internal data accessed by IANS, the total users of Jio 4G services were 700,000 and their total usage put together was 13 million GB, which translates into 18.57 GB per user, as per the internal data.

In some of the telecom circles, Reliance Jio has even surpassed the third leading telecom operator of that circle in terms of cumulative data usage. In Gujarat, for example, the third largest operator generates 1.5 million GB monthly, whereas Reliance Jio generated 1.8 million GB. But these are free data packs available for trials.

Reliance Jio’s 4G network will be on 850, 1800 and 2300 MHz spectrum bands to ensure better customer experience.

Reliance Jio expects to touch 2.5 million users and is potentially looking at 50 million GB of data.

Ericsson’s Mobile report says data traffic per smartphone is expected to increase five-fold from 1.4 GB per month in 2015 to 7 GB per month by 2021. In 2021, 99 percent of the region’s mobile traffic will be from data.

Brokerage firm CLSA says data revenues for telecom operators will double to $11 billion by 2017-18. Bharti Airtel and Reliance Jio are best-placed to gain, given their lead in spectrum as well as higher fiber and sites on network.

HSBC research said at 18 GB per month, the data consumption per month among the customers of new entrants (read Reliance Jio) in the 4G telecom space is 20 times what some existing players have been able to draw. Data consumption is 843 MB for Bharti Airtel, while Idea Cellular customers use 1 GB.

Mukesh Ambani in a message in the annual report of Reliance Industries said that 4G services would be launched in coming months.

“During the year, Reliance Jio moved towards completion of its network infrastructure as well as business services and platforms. We on-boarded over 1.5 million test users, who have been using the services extensively,” Ambani said in the company’s annual report for 2015-16.

Jio is present in all the 29 states of India with a direct physical presence in more than 18,000 urban and rural towns and over 150,000 villages.