India officially has a new 4G LTE network that is offering up free voice calling forever thanks to India's biggest industrial house. They will also have the cheapest 4G LTE rates in the world.
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Mukesh Ambani, the richest man in India, has been testing this program for quite some time. Today, he officially announced that Reliance Jio's mobile services are available to the public starting September 5, 2016, according to Mashable. It will have nation-wide LTE network coverage, free voice plans, and the best data tariff ever in India. It will be available in 18,000 cities in the country and in 200,000 remote areas.
JIo's network has been called the "largest 4G LTE deployment anywhere int he world." It will have support for 5G and 6G technology when the time comes. The hope that 90% of India's population will have it by next year.
“India and Indians cannot afford to be left behind,” Ambani said. "The era of paying for voice calls is ending,” he added. "The era of paying for voice calls is ending,” Ambani said.
India is the second most populated country int he world and has always had pretty cheap voice plans, but the data plans were far too expensive for the common user. Jio will offer its free calls and cheaper data to the country's 1.3 billion people.
India's other carriers won't be happy. Airtel, Vodafone, and Idea all make most of their revenues from voice calls.
The hope is that even if people do switch over, these companies will rethink what they charge and lower their prices to something that is reasonable.
“While all the existing players were hoping to improve revenue-wise from increased adoption and usage of data services, RJio comes into the picture with latest of technology which is a real converged service platform based on IMS (IP Multimedia Subsystem) technology allowing them to definitely operate at a lower OPEX as you are not managing multiple platforms for each of the service for consumers,” Faisal Kawoosa, Senior Analyst with CyberMedia Research India told Mashable India.
Reliance Jio hopes that they will make it big on content with a variety of offerings, including mobile wallet, security, magazine newsstand, messaging, and on-demand services. As an introductory offer, these services will be free but will go up to a subscription of Rs 15,000 ($225).
Voice calls in India:
1997: Rs 32/min
2016: Free— Mahendra Palsule (@ScepticGeek) September 1, 2016
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