BSNL set to counter Reliance Jio with free voice calling, cheaper packages soon

BSNL set to counter Reliance Jio with free voice calling, cheaper packages soon If you are thinking Reliance Jio has gone the farthest in making customer-friendly tariffs, you are in for a surprise because state-run BSNL may be bringing down prices even further.

What’s more - Unlike Jio's offer that is available for only 4G subscribers, the BSNL plan will also be open to 2G and 3G users, which constitute the majority of mobile customers. It will announce the zero-voice-tariff plans from January and these would be lower than the Rs 149 entry price of Jio.

"We are closely observing the market as well as Jio's performance. We will also come up with lifetime free-voice plans from the new year as part of fresh offerings," BSNL chairman and managing director Anupam Shrivastava said. "We plan to be even lower than the Jio plan, and this could be by Rs 2-4."

BSNL has a strong market penetration and significant share in many key markets such as Kerala, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Odisha, Punjab and UP. The loss-making PSU is, however, absent in key markets such as Mumbai and Delhi (serviced by MTNL).

Shrivastava said that the plan will be offered to BSNL's mobile customers who also have a broadband connection at home.
"The idea is to use the home broadband to route outgoing mobile calls through the landline network. We estimate that a large amount of time is spent at home, and so here we can ride on our wire-line operations," he said.

However, the free-voice facility will also be available when a subscriber would use it outside the residence.