Vodafone Idea wants to increase data prices by 10 times - to cover its spectrum dues

Vodafone Idea wants to increase data prices by 10 times - to cover its spectrum dues
The Vodafone logo is seen at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain, February 28, 2018. REUTERS/Sergio Perez/File Photo
  • Vodafone Idea has requested the Department of Telecommunication to increase the minimum base prices of data.
  • The telco has claimed that the price increase is important for the company to be able to pay statutory dues.
In what may come as a shock to Vodafone Idea users, the trouble-hit telco wants to increase the prices to be able to pay the statutory dues to the government. The company is struggling to pay adjusted gross revenue dues of ₹53,000 crore to comply with a Supreme Court order.

Vodafone Idea wants to charge a monthly connection fee, start charging for voice calls and increase per GB data cost starting from April 1, 2020. This proposed increase comes just a few months after Airtel, Jio and Vodafone Idea increased their tariffs.

Customers may have to pay up to ten times more for data

Vodafone Idea, in its letter to the Department of Telecommunications has said that the telco wants to increase the minimum price of data to ₹35 per GB, which is up to ten times more than what customers are paying at present.

PlanValidityPresent cost per GBProposed cost per GBIncrease
₹558 - 3GB per day56 days3.32351054%
₹599 - 1.5GB per day84 days4.7535737%
₹699 - 2GB per day84 days4.1635841%

Additionally, the telco also wants to end free voice calls that it is currently offering as part of its unlimited plans and charge customers 6 paise per minute, which is what Reliance Jio is charging for non-Jio calls. Airtel does not have any additional charges for voice calls in its unlimited plans.


Apart from this, Vodafone Idea also wants to charge a monthly connection fee of ₹50, due to which customers will end up paying ₹600 more to the company every year.

Vodafone Idea blames below-cost pricing for its woes

Vodafone Idea has claimed that the root cause of its financial woes is the below-cost pricing structure of telecom service which it claims has been forced upon them by competitive pressures in the industry. Jio’s entry in the telecom sector had forced Vodafone Idea and Airtel to significantly reduce prices.

Vodafone Idea believes government regulation is necessary to increase prices

The company has acknowledged that there has been an increase in the prices since December 2019 but believes that it is not enough to cover the costs. IT says that a further increase in price is not possible without regulation from the government as the market leader Jio still offers plans cheaper than other players.

See also:

Over 450 million users stuck in a limbo as Vodafone Idea, BSNL and MTNL fight to survive

Mukesh Ambani’s Jio disagrees with Airtel, Vodafone on everything except tariffs and transparency

India's Supreme Court threatened Airtel and Vodafone with 'contempt' proceedings⁠