Airtel Slashes Broadband Tariff By 40 per cent, Also Offers Freebies

Bharti Airtel seems to have taken cues from its results and has thus decided to focus more on its telemedia customers. WATBlog earlier predicted the future focus area – the telemedia services like broadband and DTH would see renewed focus and could do wonder for the telecom giant.

Mr K. Srinivas, Joint President, Telemedia Services, Bharti Airtel, told Business Line, “Our internal survey has revealed that subscribers are using more and more bandwidth. From just an average usage of 4Gb a month, broadband users are now using up to 8 Gb. Clearly this kind of usage needs higher speed. The reduction in tariffs is to present ‘true and rich’ broadband experience by making high speed broadband more affordable and offering VAS content on broadband that enriches the customer’s experience.”

Bharti Airtel currently has a million broadband users and its Telemedia division logged revenues of Rs.856 crores in June quarter. The ARPU was in excess of  Rs.1000 per subscriber.

Decline in broadband tariffs:

Airtel has brought down the broadband tariff across its list of plans. It is now offering 512 kbps unlimited connection at Rs 1,099 a month instead of Rs 1,599 earlier.

The tariff for 1Mbps speed connection is also down from Rs 2,999 to Rs 1,699 a month. Airtel has also increased download limits on its higher speed plans-limits on 8 Mbps and 16 Mbps plans have been doubled to 50 GB and 100 GB respectively.

The company at the same time would also provide Rs.600 per month of freebies (including calling value, gaming coupons, anti-virus etc) with its 1 mbps broadband plans. The freebies would be available for other plans too albeit of different worth.

The declined tariffs are currently in-line with current tariff war started by regional players in a quest to capture market share but such action from Airtel’s side would see magnanimous effect as it is a pan-Indian Operator and its tariff decline would attract similar actions from its competitors.

TRAI recently recommended increasing the minimum  limit of broadband from current 256+ kbps TO 2mbps. The broadband tariff war has till date seen negligible action from telecom biggies like BSNL and Reliance.

The Airtel tariff move would certainly propel further tariff decline as telecom biggies would now rush towards their Telemedia divisions for growth. For users, the series of actions taken place in recent months, with few big bang  Internet launches and price decline has certainly put hope for better speeds and lower broadband prices in the future.


13 Responses to “Airtel Slashes Broadband Tariff By 40 per cent, Also Offers Freebies”

  1. Nishant Singh
    July 28, 2009 at 6:41 pm #

    I think telecom biggies such as Reliance and BSNL are depending on their brand value to bring in the subscribers rather than luring people in through value added services. Alternatively, the PSU behemoth along with MTNL may rely on 3G to provide access to internet. So in that case, 3G becomes the primary objective while wireline broadband becomes secondary.

    What do you think??

  2. Pintu
    July 28, 2009 at 9:20 pm #

    I personally feel very bad when see lot of others Asian countries are providing 100MBPS home broadband cross the nation coverage and planning for 10GBPS Fiber point to point home broadband in 1 year.

    Most part of the Indian Big IT cities still don’t have broadband service coverage. Where we stand with 256kbps speed it’s not at all bench mark for broadband TRAI should understand. You can’t do anything with this speed only wasting of time and money.

    Appreciate Airtels move. Now Reliance should show some big move. Don’t talk about BSNL/MTNL they are Govt. Telco they don’t bother about business so think about QOS [Quality of Service.].

  3. July 28, 2009 at 10:38 pm #

    @ Nishant
    Reliance is desperately waiting to end its beta testing and entangle in some price war to grab larger pie of Internet connections.The telcos may ignore broadband connections now as they getting good growth in Wireless businesses,but in future when internet penetration would grow to a large level and wireless growth slows down then they would realize the importance of broadband users.The reason is Average revenues per user(ARPU) in mobile services business is continuously falling whereas broadband and other services see constant ARPU’s or even higher as user upgrade their speeds even after a reduction in tariffs.

  4. July 28, 2009 at 11:27 pm #

    A very important issue is the quality and that means minimum guaranteed speed at all times. I hope that won’t get diluted in the price war.

  5. July 29, 2009 at 10:11 am #

    @pintu @ Manish
    Yes I agree the quality of service still needs to be top-notched but the broadband environment today looks more proliferate than it was six month or one year ago.Cos now many companies are coming up with higher speed plans under low prices.Now even 1 mbps connection has become a possibility and I foresee much more price correction and betterment of service in upcoming year.

  6. Nishant Singh
    July 29, 2009 at 10:35 am #

    @Raghav, by the time wireless growth slows down wouldn’t there be technologies available to access the internet (at respectable speeds) over the portable devices? In that case broadband still plays second fiddle to mobile.
    India has gone the other way round as compared to developed nations where broadband became an essential tool first while in India the mobile is more important to own than a broadband connection. This trend, I think, is likely to stay the way it is.
    We may see innovations in the future wherein a mobile phone is as fast and capable as a modern desktop. In such a scenario, its better to have an internet connection over the mobile phone than to have a separate unit (computer) for access.

  7. July 29, 2009 at 10:39 am #

    Airtel provides a good quality of service. Bringing down costs will give more customers and people are willing to go for higher bandwidth as well. This is a good and early move by Airtel.

  8. July 29, 2009 at 10:46 am #

    I do agree with wi-fi and wi-max gaining popularity in India but the advancements of internet on mobile devices is still a big question mark cos 3G is still a year away and even that would take a long time to give good QoS at lower prices.So broadband will become the need of coming future at least in India no matter how much our telecom subscriber count grow.

  9. Nishant Singh
    July 29, 2009 at 11:39 am #

    Yes there is still some way to go before the mobile truly becomes a competitor for broadband. However, I think portability is need of the hour, you want to be able to access the internet from anywhere and not be constrained to a particular location. Such a Demand calls for innovations in the way people access internet.
    I think more than wireline broadband connections, the growth will be massive in wireless broadband connections in the near future with the advent of technologies like WiMax, EVDO etc. I think portability could be one of the decisive factors influencing the direction of broadband growth in the country.

  10. Vijeeth Shetty
    July 29, 2009 at 12:41 pm #

    You need a reality Check Raghav.. I use Tata Indicom Broadband 256 Kbps Unlimited.. and i only pay Rs.700 per month, guess that makes it the cheapest for a 256 Kb conection.. The speed is just too good, i manage to get a download speed of about 30-40 Kbps

  11. July 29, 2009 at 2:38 pm #

    Looks like you didn’t read the post carefully cos we never mentioned the rates for Tata Indicom’s 256 kbps plan only for the limited information available on their site.
    The information was meant to provide a rough estimate of current prevailing broadband tariffs in metro towns-Mumbai,in no way we concluded which broadband operator is cheapest or best.

  12. Amit
    August 19, 2009 at 8:33 pm #

    Tataindicom’s service in Kolkata is very very bad. Extremely bad indeed. During rainy season they have excuse after excuse for lines getting bad. Connections staying off for days. Their call centre in Hyderabad is staffed by personnel demonstrating shallow intelligence. Finally it takes multiple calls to the long wait call-centre to get the service fixed in 7-10 days. I am extremely unsatisfied by Tataindicom’s wired broadband service.

    I then moved to Airtel an year back. And it was heaven! ZILCH line break/connection drops. Perfect connection in all weather conditions. First I upgraded from 256 unlimited to 384 unlimited and now to 512 unlimited. Perfect service. Courteous service. Service by intelligent people who know their job. Ontime quick service.

    Conclusion: Folks, touchwood, just ask around among your own friends for anyone who has Airtel wired broadband connection. You will come to the same conclusion that I have come to: In India, at present Airtel wired broadband is the most reliable, excellent service (and now the cheapest too! (amongst the biggies)

  13. August 30, 2009 at 10:19 pm #

    Hi, Everybody..
    Inthis days Our Country of India leading in software Technology as in around the global market. So We must have need for nominal Broad Bond service charges is it only avilable in monthly below Rs.120.00(One Hundread Twenty Rupees) applicable for best with our co-operation of Govt.Of India. This offer can help to maximum software industry.

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