It also restarted taking bookings for Jiophone.
“This Republic Day will mark the launch of yet another unprecedented plan exclusively for JioPhone users that will ensure affordable services for every Indian. JioPhone users will enjoy free voice calls and unlimited data (1GB at high speed) for 28 days at a price of only Rs. 49,” it said.
The plan can be used to watch live TV on JioTV app and movies and other programs on JioCinema on the semi-smartphone.
The company said it will also introduce affordable data add-ons at Rs 11, 21, 51 and 101.
Though it was not specified, the top-ups look like they are being launched for everyone and not just for Jiophone users.
The move follows a similar launch from Bharti Airtel, which is giving up to 90 GB for Rs 193.
It is also an attempt to correct the imbalance caused by a sharp reduction in non-Jiophone tariffs in recent days.
The company also said the Jiophone will soon be available at retail shops as well as for online ordering through MyJio App or Jio.com.
The company also promised to reach 99% of Indians with its 4G signals by the end of the year.
“With Jio’s network expected to cover 99% of India’s population this year, India’s 4G coverage will be more than 2G coverage in the country. High quality and affordable data will be within the reach of the common man,” it said.
It also noted that 4G data tariffs have crashed in recent days. Jio has effectively halved its data price from around Rs 5 per GB to about Rs 2.7 per GB for the cheapest plans.
BAD FOR IDEA, VODAFONE
The new plans come barely 24 hours after Idea Cellular CEO Himanshu Kapania asked for calm in the market and suggested that the Mukesh Ambani-led firm and rival Bharti Airtel should stop going to war with each other.
The latest offer indicates that Ambani is in no mood to listen to any such counsel.
The new plans come at a particularly inopportune time for Idea and Vodafone as they cannot aggressively cut prices before their merger due to the risk of degrading their network quality.
The two companies are waiting for the government to clear their merger so that they could combine and optimize their network to take on Jio and Airtel.