Reliance Jio's reasonably-priced data and voice packs have forced incumbent telecom players to match the new standards. While Airtel is fighting tooth and nail to stay ahead of its main rival in India, other players haven't come close to the fierce competition between the duo.
Idea Cellular, in a bid to become the frontrunner, launched a new plan that guarantees no shortage of data. The carrier launched a Rs 998 tariff plan for prepaid customers in India that offers 5GB 4G/2G data for a period of 35 days.
Along with the generous data offering, users get unlimited voice calls and 100 SMS per day for the duration of the pack's validity. It's worth mentioning that the unlimited voice calls come with a cap of calling 100 unique numbers per week, 1,000 minutes per week and 250 minutes per day – a move widely seen to curb spam or marketing calls.
Post the given limit, users will be charged 1 paisa per second for all local and STD calls. Idea Cellular has released the plan only in the Odisha circle for now, and there's no word on further expansion. But Idea customers in other circles, such as Karnataka, can avail the same benefits for 28 days.
Good enough to compete with Jio and Airtel?
Idea's offer comes close to the competition, even if it is with certain limitations. But Airtel and Reliance Jio take a lead on this one.
Reliance Jio offers a Rs 799 plan, which gives customers 5GB data per day along with uncapped unlimited voice calls and SMS for 28 days. Airtel also has a Rs 799 plan with 3.5GB data per day for 28 days alongside unlimited calls. Unlike Idea's offer, Airtel and Jio plans are available nationwide.
While most popular plans from all major telcos include 1GB daily data, a 5GB data plan means the user should be having some heavy data consumption habits. Unless you do a lot of downloads, uploads, and streaming in high-res, there's no reason to actually go for such heavy data packs.
The new plan by Idea comes shortly after the telco announced its launch of VoLTE services in the country. Idea VoLTE is expected to be launched in all 20 circles by the end of April.
Stay tuned for more updates on India's prepaid plans and industry trends.