Telecom carrier Reliance Jio on Wednesday announced that it would build more mobile towers to improve its services. For this, it has pledged to invest more on network connectivity infrastructure.
"Reliance Jio in meeting with Telecom Minister (Manoj Sinha) has committed to invest 45,000 crore mobile towers in next 6 months to further strengthen its network. The company has said that it has plans to invest Rs 1 lakh crore over a period of 4 years and the new towers are part of this investment," an official source told the Press Trust of India.
Reliance Jio, thanks to its free welcome trial offer, amassed a whopping 2.4 million plus subscribers within two months of its launch.
But the unprecedented increase in usage had a huge impact on the network connectivity, leading to a slowdown in the internet. This adds to the woes of Reliance Jio, which is already reeling under call drop issues due to non availability of the required interconnect points.
Before the official launch, Reliance Jio had earmarked Rs 1.6 lakh crore towards networks and installed 2.82 lakh base stations across the country covering 18,000 cities and 2 lakh villages.
Last month, the company renewed its expiring spectrum in 800 MHz band in Gujarat circle and purchased additional spectrums in the 800 MHz, 1800 MHz and 2300 MHz bands across all the 22 service regions for Rs 13,672 crore. Now, it looks like that wasn't enough.
In a related development, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has recommended imposing a combined penalty of Rs 3,050 crore on three mobile network operators — Vodafone, Bharti Airtel and Idea Cellular — for denying interconnection points to Reliance Jio Infocomm.
Senior executives of all the three companies held a meeting with TRAI chairman RS Sharma to discuss the inter-connectivity points issue, but Sharma reportedly refused to drop the penalty on incumbent players, and instructed them to resolve the call drop issue amicably with Reliance Jio.
Watch this space for more updates.