Hyderabad: The low-tariff regime is over in India as three major telecom operators – Vodafone Idea, Bharti Airtel and Jio – have increased their pre-paid rates by 40-50 percent. The new rates of Vodafone Idea and Bharti Airtel are effective from December 3, while Reliance Jio will be increasing tariffs from December 6. To compensate the customers for the increased tariff, the telecoms are offering enhanced data and other benefits.

After doling out data and voice services at a low price for three years, when Reliance Jio hit the market with rock-bottom tariff plans, the private telecom operators recently announced a hike in charges following the Supreme Court ruling on adjusted gross revenues. The operators are reeling under acute revenue crunch amid a slowdown in the domestic economy.

State-run telecom major BSNL may also increase tariffs. Telecom regulator Trai has said that there would be no floor rate for voice or data and the telcos would have to thrash out pricing among themselves to cover their losses.

Reliance Jio was the last one to announce revised rates. Jio, which raised tariffs up to 40 percent, is set to introduce an 'all-in-one' plan with unlimited voice and data. The plan will provide subscribers with affordable calls to other networks. With the new plan, Jio said, customers will get up to 300 percent more benefits.

Airtel has revised its Rs 129 pack for 28 days with unlimited calling, 300 SMS, and 2GB data, to Rs 148.

Airtel’s annual plan of Rs 998 with 336-day validity has been increased by 50 percent. The plan comes with unlimited calling, 3,600 SMSes and 12GB data. The new plan which will cost Rs 1,498 offers 24GB data and 365-day validity to the customers.

Jio's Rs 1,699 plan will now cost Rs 2,398. It offers unlimited calling, 100 SMS and 1.5GB data per day.

The two plans of Airtel – Rs 169 and Rs 199 for 28 days – have been merged to offer a Rs 248 plan with same benefits of unlimited calling, 100 SMS and 1.5GB data a day.

Vodafone Idea has rolled out 'First Recharge Packs' that will cost Rs 97 with Rs 45 talk time. It comes with 100MB data and voice calls charged at one paisa per second. The plan is valid for 28 days. Other plans are priced at Rs 197, Rs 297 and Rs 647. These plans offer up to 1.5GB data a day and unlimited 'on-net' calling for 84 days. The Rs 249 plan of Vodafone, which comes with unlimited calls, 100 SMS and 2GB data a day, will now cost Rs 298. The Rs 448 and 499 plans have been revised to Rs 598 and Rs 698 for 84 days.

Vodafone Idea’s ‘on-net’ voice calls will cost six paise per minute. The 'on-net' voice calls after reaching FUP limit will be charged six paise per minute (this is the same as the first sentence. If you could get this clarified), similar to Reliance Jio. It is also providing bundled 'on-net' minutes, whereas Jio will be charging customers for IUC 'top-up' vouchers.

Sreenivasa Rao Dasari

Dasari Sreenivasa Rao is a freelance journalist with 26 years of mainstream media experience in Hyderabad and Dubai. He was Business Editor at The Pioneer and Spl Correspondent at Deccan Chronicle and The Hans India. Earlier, he worked for prestigious media brands including ToI, Indian Express (Bombay) and SPG Media and Business Standard in Hyderabad. NSE-qualified Dasari specializes in derivatives trading. He was visiting faculty at IGNOU and handled two batches of journalism students. Dasari is passionate about business journalism and always suggests all to practice rigorous meditation that ensures peace of mind and helps in moving up the value chain.

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