Reliance Jio ahead in network coverage but trails in 4G speeds: report

Reliance Jio network coverage is ahead of incumbents but the newcomer trails Airtel in 4G speeds given the high load on its network during the free offer period, says Credit Suisse


Reliance Jio carries 90% plus of all data traffic in the country currently while its network capacity share is closer to 35%. Photo: Aniruddha Chowdhury/Mint
Reliance Jio carries 90% plus of all data traffic in the country currently while its network capacity share is closer to 35%. Photo: Aniruddha Chowdhury/Mint

New Delhi: Reliance Jio network coverage is significantly ahead of the other operators but the newcomer trails Airtel in 4G speeds given the high load on its network during the free offer period, says a report by Credit Suisse.

“Our conclusion is that Reliance Jio’s network coverage is significantly ahead of the other operators. Reliance Jio has good coverage in 80% plus of cities surveyed, compared to less than 30% for the others. The difference is even more stark when compared only with 4G networks of incumbents (sub-15% of cities),” the latest report said.

However, the newcomer did not fare as well when it came to speeds — the survey concluded that Airtel offered the best 4G speeds, while Reliance Jio was “probably bogged down by load”. “We also studied the network speed results across all these locations.

Airtel 4G offers the best download speeds in general (12Mbps plus). Reliance Jio, Vodafone and Idea are close to each other (7-8Mbps). We suspect Reliance Jio’s speeds are impacted by the high load on the network in the free offer period,” Credit Suisse said.

Also Read: Reliance Jio tariff plans in line with regulations: Trai

Reliance Jio carries 90% plus of all data traffic in the country currently while its network capacity share is closer to 35%, it added. The competitive pressure is expected to sustain, the report said adding that significant pressure on fundamentals will continue in coming quarters from Reliance Jio.

“We have already started seeing the impact of Reliance Jio on the incumbents’ numbers (Bharti 3Q). Our study here shows Reliance Jio has built a significant lead in terms of network coverage, and the incumbents have a fair amount of catch up to do (especially on 4G). Importantly, going by recently announced enhanced capex plans, the company continues to invest,” it added.

The study covers over 30 Indian cities that represent a “significant chunk of current data demand and revenues”, it said.

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