In a speech made at Reliance Industries' annual general meeting last year, Chairman Mukesh Ambani had indicated that the group's telecom venture, Reliance Jio Infocomm, was on track to offer high-speed broadband services and it would be the company’s next big monetisation opportunity. Now, according to a news report in Livemint, the telecom operator is expected to launch the wired fibre-to-the-home (FTTH) broadband services by the end of this year.
Earlier last year, Reliance Jio had started testing the wired broadband services in select cities. In beta trials, the company has been offering unlimited internet data at 100Mbps speed at a security deposit of Rs 4,500. The company has also been providing a special router, which connects multiple devices, with a multi-service operator (MSO) licence in place to offer TV services.
According to an earlier report in Business Standard, Jio has been planning to leverage technology to resolve some of the problems of FTTH. For instance, it’s likely to use power-line communicators -- a small plug-and-play device that extends the strong WiFi signal to rooms far away from the router. While FTTH can get problematic in large homes and offices, and Jio has been working on a strategy to use the existing electric wiring to transmit data and TV signals across the house.
Though nothing has been officially confirmed, the wired broadband services from Jio are expected to launch with a preview offer – similar to how the company launched its Jio services -- with free access to JioFiber services for 90 days. Under the complimentary offer, the JioFibre broadband services might offer a broadband speed of up to 100 Mbps, besides free access to Jio premium applications and television services.
Reliance Jio’s competitor Bharti Airtel recently announced a new 300 Mbps FTTH broadband plan at a monthly rental of Rs 2,199. The new plan comes with up to 1200 GB of data, along with free unlimited local and STD calls. The new plan comes bundled with a free subscription to Airtel’s OTT apps -- Wynk Music and Airtel TV.
As a promotional offer, Airtel is also offering a one-year free subscription to Amazon Prime Videos and 1,000 GB of additional data per month valid until October 2018. The broadband plan comes with a data rollover facility, which allows users to carry forward unused data to the next billing cycle.