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General News Idea Cellular may soon offer unlimited free data to counter Jio and Airtel: Report
NEW DELHI: Idea Cellular, the country's third largest telecom operator, may soon start offering unlimited free data with certain data packs or plans with a validity of 1-1.5 years, Moneycontrol reported.

The offer may be available only to 4G users, the report said, adding that Idea might also offer free international incoming calls on a down payment as well as it may introduce loyalty plans for customers.

The Aditya Birla-owned telco’s anticipated move would be a response to Reliance Jio’s and Airtel’s free data schemes. The price war continues to intensify after Reliance Jio extended its free services till March, 2017.

Notably, Bharti Airtel, India’s largest telco, earlier this week made a concerted bid to poach 4G customers from rivals, launching a special offer that allows additional 3GB of data each month for a year for customers who switch to its services from rivals and opt for mid-to-high end plans.

Airtel's prepaid customers on recharge of Rs 345 will get unlimited local and STD calls to any network in India as well as 1GB fixed data per monthly cycle.

Airtel’s postpaid customers opting for any MyPlan Infinity plan can get 3GB free data along with similar benefits as that of prepaid users. The free data provided by Airtel is in addition to the subscribed benefits.

Reliance Jio’s Happy New Year offer provides unlimited voice, data, video call, SMS and Jio Apps till 31st March 2017 for which existing Jio customers need not buy a new SIM to avail the offer. As part of the offer, Jio customers get 1 GB daily data which Jio says is 30 times the average usage on other networks.

Jio reportedly crossed 60 million customers till date since kicking off commercial operations on September 5. In December, it extended its free services till March 31, 2017 that is likely to help the 4G entrant grab a bigger chunk of the market.

In order to retain the subscriber base, incumbent telcos are expected to come up with more freebies.

However, the report card of who gained what will come out only after March 31 when Jio’s free services will discontinue.

Airtel Digital HD Recorder / Kerala Vision Digital TV
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