Reliance 4G data plans make app calling 95 percent cheaper in India
Reliance 4G data plans make app calling 95 percent cheaper in IndiaReuters

Reliance Jio 4G roll-out is being watched closely by smartphone users as the service is going to disrupt the data communication industry in a big way. For months, Reliance has been testing its Jio 4G data and voice services with limited number of users, mostly its employees and their families, but the public roll-out inching closer now. 

According to a PTI report on Monday, Reliance Communications will start offering 4G service using Jio's network to its CDMA customers starting this week. What's more exciting is the attractive pricing that the customers will pay to get the high-speed mobile internet service. The report says that select circles will get 10GB 4G data at a starting price of Rs. 93. If true, it would be the cheapest and most effective 4G service across India.

"RCom has written to the Department of Telecom, informing (the department) that it will be using Reliance Jio Infocomm 4G network to provide 4G data service to its CDMA customers from next week. Only those CDMA customers who opted for the upgrade will get the service," an official source told PTI.

Reliance Communications serves 8 million CDMA users and the data shared by the company with DoT showed that over 90 percent of its customers have opted for the upgrade. At its price, it is certainly a worthy deal as it is about 94 percent cheaper than the most competitive 4G data prices by its rivals. The report cited RCom's official website to state that the 4G rates for its CDMA customers will vary between Rs. 93 and Rs. 97 per 10GB in most circles.

RCom's 4G services will be available in Mumbai, Delhi, Kolkata, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, UP East and West, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh and Bihar, and soon be expanded to Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka and Rajasthan by mid-July following DoT's approval. The service is expected to cover the entire nation by mid-August.

But there is no official word from the company on these lines, but there are conflicts in terms of 4G pricing for RCom's CDMA users. While the PTI report suggests ultra-cheap prices for 4G, a separate report from RTN.Asia suggests the data services will be premium. If the alternate report is to be believed, CDMA customers are likely to be shocked by the obnoxious pricing of 4G data services in select circles.

RTN.Asia says the official data released by RCom revealed that its CDMA prepaid users in Mumbai will pay Rs. 297 for 1GB data per month, Rs. 501 for 2GB, Rs. 698 for 3GB and Rs. 1,099 for 5GB of 4G data. While these pricing seems more realistic than the earlier report by PTI, but customers will end up paying more than that of what rival Airtel offers. Comparatively, Airtel charges Rs. 265 for 1GB 4G data per month to its users.

Postpaid customers are being charged Rs. 1,500 for 10GB and Rs. 250 for 1GB, which is much reasonable, but the taxes are added on top of these prices. With these two reports making the rounds, the anticipation for the official 4G pricing by Reliance increases. It is unclear which report is true, but we are expecting to hear more about this sometime this week.