HOME > BUSINESS > Reliance Jio 4G launch date is NOT postponed by Mukesh Ambani in CNN interview

Reliance Jio 4G launch date is NOT postponed by Mukesh Ambani in CNN interview

mukesh-ambani-reliance-jio-launch-date
screengrab of the CNN interview

Sometimes, even the best can get it wrong, and it looks like that’s what happened in the case of ‘Mukesh Ambani says Reliance Jio to launch in second half’ story.

Across publications, everyone is reporting that Ambani postponed the launch date of what is touted to be India’s biggest 4G service to the second half of this year. But that is not true, if you go by the transcript of the interview put out by Firstpost.com.

First, let’s see what different publications are reporting:

“We’ll be ready to launch in the second half of 2016. Eighty percent of India’s population will have high-speed mobile broadband Internet. So, 80% of the 1.3 billion Indians will have high-speed, mobile Internet. And by 2017, and we would cover 90%. And, by 2018, all of India would be covered by this digital infrastructure.”

But the transcript of Mukesh Ambani’s interview, given on Firstpost website gives a different picture. In it, he says:

“Well, we are ready to launch and in the second half of 2016, 80% of India’s population will have high speed mobile broadband internet – so 80 % of the 1.3 billion Indians will have high speed mobile internet. By 2017 end, we will cover 90% and by 2018 all of India would be covered by this (Jio) digital infrastructure.”

Of course, the difference is only in a few words here and there and in the punctuation and so on, but it makes a lot of difference if you are trying to gauge the launch date of Reliance Jio.

Specifically, while most publications are reporting that Ambani said “We’ll be ready to launch in the second half of 2016,” Firstpost.com — which is owned by Ambani’s Reliance Industries, is reporting the sentence as “Well, we are ready to launch and in the second half of 2016, 80% of India’s population will have high speed mobile broadband internet.”

The two, of course, don’t mean the same thing. The first is clear affirmation that the launch will happen in the second half, and that is indeed what everyone is reporting, while the second says that Jio is ready to launch, and goes on to give coverage milestones.

Typically, telecom companies give coverage milestones such as “X% by 12 months, Y% by 2 years” and so on, and it looks like Ambani was saying that coverage will be increased to 80% of the population by the second half of the year and 90% by next year.

It is, of course, possible that Reliance Jio is indeed pushing the 4G launch date to the second half, but such an affirmation cannot be made purely on the basis of this sentence.

MORALE ISSUE

Any further delay in the already much-delayed project would be a setback — both for employees of the firm as well as eager customers.

Going by our on-the-ground reports, such a delay is not on the cards, and the launch date target continues to be “sometime in March/April” as it has been for the last couple of months.

Not surprisingly, reports that the operator was delaying the launch even further have led to sharp reactions on social media, with many eager consumers turning to humor to hide their disappointment. One person said the company is waiting for 5G technology to mature before starting its services.

WHY DELAY IS UNLIKELY

Besides our on-the-ground feelers, there are many other reasons why a delay is unlikely.

First, Reliance Retail has already imported millions, perhaps even 1 crore, handsets for sale when the service starts. And they are not selling them aggressively yet.

If the company delays the launch by six months, the handsets will become outdated, though not unsaleable. They will require huge discounts to see any market momentum.

At an average cost of Rs 9,000, 10 mln handsets requires an investment of Rs 9,000 cr.

The second factor is competition. One of the biggest advantages that any start-up has over established players is the radically different way it approaches the market. This includes the way it structures its costs and business operations, the kind of services it offers and often the prices at which it does so.

Over the last two years — and largely thanks to Jio’s own disclosures, much of the information about how the operator plans to disrupt the market is already out. This includes its plans for cut-throat pricing, its strategy of offering multimedia content and not just a pipe, extreme scale and the reach of its network and so on.

Over the last six months, RJio’s competitors have started copying much of the company’s strategy.

For example, in April last year, when Idea officials were asked if the company would roll out 4G before March 2016, the company said that they were not planning to make any meaningful investments in the technology before March.

“Meaningful capex , if you were to use the word for 4G launch , which i s the correct word to use, the answer is No. We will do POC (proof of concept).”

However, with Jio threatening their market shares, all of its big rivals including Idea have already launched 4G services in a big way. In fact, Idea is ramping so fast that it may become the biggest 4G operator by June, when it plans to have 750 cities covered by the service.

Similarly, these operators are moving fast to offer their own video services and other value-adds in an effort not to be caught unawares by Jio. Airtel announced its project leap, seen as a response to the RJio threat, to upgrade its network.

In fact, the company announced last week that it had moved its network from 4G to 4G+ in Kerala. 4G+ networks support handsets such as Redmi Note 3, which come with Category 6 LTE that offers more stable and often faster data throughput.

Similarly, Idea, Vodafone and Bharti are busy swapping their old fixed-technology base stations for flexible ones that can allow them to switch their network from 2G to 3G and from 3G to 4G at a later date with the ‘flick of a switch’ at their network control centers.

According to our sources, Jio is more likely to go for a limited launch instead of postponing the starting of its service to the second half. There are already reports that the first phase of launch would be done in 13 cities.

To read the full transcript, head to Firstpost.com.
[socialpoll id=”2334919″]

Follow ULTRA.news
Reliance Jio starts turning off free services, urges users to recharge Reliance Jio, the telecom firm that has caught the country by storm, has started turning off the connections of those subscribers who have not recharged their mobile phones since the beginning of April.In April, it had introduced the Summer Surprise offer, and gave around fou...
Idea Cellular likely to expand 4G offers this year Idea Cellular, India's third biggest telecom player by revenue, is likely to see its 4G data capacity rise to three times the current level over the next nine months, which is likely to push the price of data down further.This could impact Reliance Jio's ability to stop its d...
Vodafone slashes 4G offer prices after Airtel, Idea reveal explosion of data Vodafone India renewed efforts to promote its cut-price voice and data offerings in recent days as the latest quarterly numbers from rivals Idea Cellular and Bharti Airtel suggested they had given out bigger discounts in the April-June period than anyone had expected.Earlier ...
Bharti Airtel will launch VoLTE next year Bharti Airtel is still testing its 4G voice or Voice over LTE service and a pan-India launch will take place only by January-March of 2018.Gopal Vittal"VoLTE is a very complex technology," CEO Gopal Vittal said. "There is a lot of optimization. It has to be tested device...
No plans to launch JioPhone rival – Bharti Airtel Bharti Airtel, India's largest telecom provider by revenue, said it has no intention of launching a rival phone similar to the super-cheap semi-smartphone launched by rival Reliance Jio.Asked if the company needed to come out with a similar, affordable handset to compete with...
Telecom license fees fall 23% as Reliance Jio hits call, data prices The license fees paid by telecom operators in India to the central government fell by 23% to 2,663 crore in the three months ended March compared to the previous three months, the government said.Compared to nine months earlier, the fall was 33%.Telecom access providers, ...
HALVED: Bharti Airtel’s data price crashes to Rs 60/GB due to Reliance Jio Bharti Airtel was forced to slash its data price by half to about Rs 60 per GB in the April to June period of 2017, the latest numbers revealed.In contrast, Bharti Airtel was charging around Rs 125 per GB in the three months from January to March of this year. A year ago, it ...
Bharti Airtel profit down 75%, says market remains “turbulent” Bharti Airtel Limited reported a drop of 14% in its revenue for the first quarter, at Rs 21,958 crore. Adjusted for sale of its units, the drop was 11%, it said.Net profit fell 75% to 367 crore rupees for the first quarter. Operating profit was down 18%.India revenues for...
Bharti Airtel Q1 revenue up 10%, profit down 12% Tower provider Bharti Infratel reported a 10% growth in its revenue and profit for the first quarter.The Consolidated revenues for the quarter, at Rs. 3,524 Crore, was up by 10% over the corresponding period last year.Consolidated profit from operations improved to Rs 1,...
Is the Reliance Jio’s JioPhone really free? The latest entrant to India's telecom market, Reliance Jio, has announced an unprecedented offer -- a 4G enabled phone with support for apps and videocalling for free.According to Mukesh Ambani, customers do not have to pay anything for the phone as the cost of the phone will...
JIOPHONE: Reliance Jio to give unlimited data at Rs 153 / month Reliance Jio chairman Mukesh Ambani announced the JioPhone, which aims to bring smartphone features to the candybar form factor.The phone will be given to anyone if they deposit Rs 1500 with the company. The user will get the Rs 1500 back when the device is returned after 36 ...
Reliance Jio offers phone for ‘free’, unlimited voice, data at Rs 153 Reliance Jio chairman Mukesh Ambani announced the JioPhone, which aims to bring smartphone features to the candybar form factor.The phone will be given to anyone if they deposit Rs 1500 with the company. The user will get the Rs 1500 back when the device is returned after 36 ...
WATCH HERE: Mukesh Ambani speech on Reliance Jio at AGM today Mukesh Ambani, chairman of Reliance Jio will make a 'significant announcement' about the 4G wireless service provider's offerings at 11 AM on Friday while delivering his annual speech at its parent's annual general meeting.A live webcast of Mukesh Ambani's speech at the AGM, a...
BSNL halves 2Mbps unlimited plan to Rs 599 from 1,199 Faced with a slowdown due to the emergence of the pan-India competitor Reliance Jio, state-owned Bharat Sanchar Nigam Ltd has halved the price of its unlimited 2 Mbps DSL broadband plan to 599 per month.BSNL NEW UNLIMITED BROADBAND PLANThe player was earlier offering unl...
Spectranet overtakes Airtel Broadband on Netflix speed ranking for India Netflix, the world's biggest distributor of movies, ranked Mumbai-based 7 Star cable network and Spectranet, which offers fiber broadband in several cities, as the fastest networks for prime time usage.The average speed available to Netflix was 2.77 Mbps on 7 Star cable and 2...
With tariff change, Idea Cellular 4G data now cheaper than Reliance Jio Idea 4G tariff planWith Reliance Jio raising the price of its 1GB-per-day pack from Rs 309 to Rs 399, Idea Cellular has managed to beat the new operator in this segment, though not by much.Idea Cellular offers 1GB/day for 84 days at Rs 397, making it cheaper by 2 rupees....
Reliance Jio users should recharge with new plans by Friday for continued service Most Reliance Jio 4G users have to recharge their phones by Friday, July 14 to continue uninterrupted service.This because the current offer -- Summer Surprise or Dhan Dhana Dhan -- came into effect on April 16, and will complete 90 days by Friday.The Summer Surprise pla...
RELIANCE JIO unveils NEW PLANS valid from today Reliance Jio's new tariff plansIndia's biggest wireless data provider Reliance Jio unveiled a new set of plans as it continues to migrate its customers towards paid plans.The key difference between the new plans and the previous Dhan Dhana Dhan offer is that the new plan...
LAST CHANCE: Reliance Jio’s Dhan Dhana Dhan offer ends today Today marks the last day of telecom operator Reliance Jio's Dhan Dhana Dhan promotional offer that triples the validity of 4G recharges on its platform.The offer was unveiled as a promotional scheme on April 11, and according to the law, promotional schemes can be valid only ...
Reliance Jio to offer 5 GB/day for Rs 999 per month Users of the JioFi, the personal hotspot device from Reliance Jio, will be able to get a new plan that takes the free data offered per day to 5 GB.At present, the highest amount of free data that any user on the 4G service can get is 2 GB, for a payment of around Rs 500 for 2...
Reliance Jio tops in user satisfaction, but call drop concerns remain Percentage of customers giving 4 or 5 starsReliance Jio users are a happier lot than customers of other services, but call drops and network availability remain key concerns, according to a survey conducted by a market research firm Velocity MR.The firm conducted a study...
Vodafone India offers unlimited downloading for 5 hours at Rs 29 Taking a leaf from new entrant Reliance Jio's playbook, Vodafone India has announced a 'truly unlimited' five-hour data pack for Rs 29.The pack, called Vodafone SuperNight, will work between 1 AM and 6 AM and is open for prepaid customers only. It will work on both 3G and 4G...
RIL stock up as Reliance Jio proves doubters wrong, avoids an April dip in subscribers Shares of Reliance Industries rose 3.5% today -- an extraordinary move for such a large company -- after it emerged that not only did the company not lose subscribers when it made the transition from free to paid services in April, it actually added a few million.The result ...
Reliance Jio launches extra data offer on some LYF handsets Reliance Jio, the 4G operator is now offering 20% extra data to those who are using its services using a LYF branded handset.Jio offers 20% extra data on certain LYF modelsIn other words, if you are eligible to get 1 GB of data per day, you will get 1.2 GB per day on a L...
Grasim-Adiya Birla Nuvo merger approved, ABFSL listing soon The Aditya Birla Group said it got the approval of the Company Law Tribunal for the merger of Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd and Grasim industries Ltd and the listing of Aditya Birla Financial Services Ltd.The approval was obtained from the Ahmedabad bench."The approved Scheme ha...