Intensifying the bitter pricing war ongoing in the Indian telecom sector, Airtel, India's biggest telecom operator, has launched prepaid plans ranging from Rs 8 to Rs 399 to counter new comer Reliance Jio's prepaid offers. These plans are widely perceived as Airtel's bid to restrict existing customers from switching to Reliance Jio. Newcomer Jio has brought a pricing revolution in the telecom industry through its ultra-low cost data and free voice call offerings, some analysts say. However, consumers have become the ultimate beneficiary of this pricing war in the telecom industry.
Let's have a look on the prepaid plans of Airtel in comparison with Jio
Airtel vs Jio: Rs 399 Plan
Airtel offers 1 GB data per day for 84 days at 4G speed along with unlimited local and STD calls. This plan is targeted to counter Jio's Rs 399 plan which also offers unlimited local and STD calls along with 1 GB data per day for 84 days. However, the Rs 399 recharge plan of Airtel is offered to select customers only. Whereas Jio's Rs 399 plan is open for all.
Airtel vs Jio: Rs 349 Plan
Airtel is offering unlimited local and STD calls plus 28 GB data (1GB/day) for 28 days under its Rs 349 recharge plan. This plan is targeted to counter Jio's Rs 349 recharge pack, which offers unlimited local and STD calls along with 20 GB data for 56 days. However, there is no daily limit on data consumption in Jio's Rs 349 plan. One can consume the entire 20 GB data in one day or over the 56 days as per his requirement.
Airtel vs Jio: Rs 149 Plan
The Rs 149 plan of Airtel offers unlimited Airtel to Airtel calls plus 2GB data at 4G speed with 28 days validity. However, Jio's Rs 149 plan offers unlimited local and STD calls to any mobile or landline across India plus 2 GB data for 28 days.
(A screenshot of available prepaid Airtel plans)
That compared with Jio's prepaid plans, as per its website - jio.com.
(A snapshot of all prepaid plans offered by Reliance Jio)
Here are some other plans of Airtel to counter Jio
Airtel Rs. 60 plan: Rs. 58 talk time with unlimited validity
Airtel Rs 8 plan: Local+STD mobile calls 30piase/minute for 56 days
Airtel Rs. 40 plan: Rs. 35 talk time with unlimited validity
Airtel Rs. 5 plan: 4GB 3G/4G data for 7 days. Offer valid only after 4G SIM upgradation and for one time recharge only
Airtel Rs. 199 plan: Unlimited local mobile calls plus 1GB 2G/3G/4G data for 28 days
Airtel's profit and margins have dwindled in recent quarters after Jio commenced its services in last September. In the April-June quarter this year, Airtel reported 75 per cent decline in its net profit at Rs 367 crore compared to Rs 1,462 crore in the year-ago quarter. Analysts say this competitive environment is likely to persist in the telecom industry in the future as the new entrant Jio is likely to maintain aggressive pricing to gain market share.