Mumbai: India’s largest telco Airtel on Wednesday launched a broadband plan for fixed-line users along with free calls in the financial capital, upping its play in the competitive sector.
The New Delhi-headquartered company said it has upgraded its network capability to deliver high speed data connectivity through fixed-line phones using the ‘V-Fibre’ technology, which claims to offer up to 100 Mbps.
It already has 3.51 lakh fixed-line subscribers, a majority of them commercial enterprises, who can potentially upgrade to the high-speed coverage. Sameer Batra, its chief executive for Mumbai, said the company’s presence in the DTH space to bring satellite broadcasting, coupled with wireless and wired connectivity will help make it preferred company for consumers. It can be noted that Reliance Jio—which has launched its wireless services with free calling—also has a considerably big fibre optic cable network, which can help it launch similar offerings.
Just like Jio, Airtel will not be charging customers for data for the first three months, Batra said. When asked about whom the company is competing against, he claimed this is the first such offering in the market giving users speeds of up to 100 MBPS and hence, does not see an immediate rival.
The company is aiming to have all of its 3.51 lakh fixed lines phones upgrade to the newer offering, Batra said, adding it does not take any additional expenses apart from Rs1,000 for a modem which is available on EMIs.
The basic plan starts at Rs599 for 10 GB data, but the unlimited calling feature is available only for the 60GB per month plan which comes at a rental of Rs1,299, Batra said. The cheaper plans can convert to free calling by paying Rs99 per month, he said.