You are here: Home » PTI Stories » National » News
Business Standard

'Internet telephony in India under threat from major telcos'

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

Serial entrepreneur Bhavin Turakhia today said telecom operators in the country are "reluctant" in driving innovation and their demand of only service providers being allowed to offer internet telephony is "anti-competitive".

Turakhia, who is co-founder of the USD 1.4-billion Directi Group, claimed that internet telephony in India is "under threat from major telecom players".

"Incumbent providers like Vodafone, Airtel, Idea, etc are reluctant to reduce costs and drive innovation. Allegedly, incumbent operators are claiming that only the telecom carrier that provides a data connection to a subscriber should be allowed to offer internet telephony to that subscriber over their internet connection," he said in a statement.

Internet telephony allows users to make calls to any phone number over the web.

"Internet telephony enables customers to make calls at 1/3rd the current calling rates and provides numerous benefits such as the ability to make calls over Wi-Fi in bad signal areas, 90 per cent cheaper international calling, HD voice, and innovations like simultaneous data transmission, video calls, and many more," he said.

He added that the comments made by incumbents in response to a TRAI paper "make inaccurate claims and representations".

Turakhia, along with iSPIRIT, have launched a 'Free Your Voice' campaign to counter the stand of telecom operators in their response to TRAI's consultation paper on internet telephony dated June 22, 2016.

The paper intends to introduce prospective policies, recommendations and clarifications concerning Internet telephony in India.

Sudhir Singh from iSPIRT said the government should remove all "shackles".

"Leaving internet telephony only to the incumbent large telcos will not be in the interest of consumer. Regulator should fit in the entry of number of small and medium size players, also. This will help innovation, micro and small businesses and availability of variety of niche services," he added.

In his first brush with the telcos last year, Turakhia had launched a service -- Ringo -- which allowed users to make domestic calls at 19 paise a minute.

This was almost 90 per cent cheaper than then prevalent charges as it used conference system over landlines.

The service was then suspended after Bharti Airtel Chairman Sunil Mittal commented that apps like Ringo were "gaming the system" to hurt operators.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

Dear Reader,


Business Standard has always strived hard to provide up-to-date information and commentary on developments that are of interest to you and have wider political and economic implications for the country and the world. Your encouragement and constant feedback on how to improve our offering have only made our resolve and commitment to these ideals stronger. Even during these difficult times arising out of Covid-19, we continue to remain committed to keeping you informed and updated with credible news, authoritative views and incisive commentary on topical issues of relevance.
We, however, have a request.

As we battle the economic impact of the pandemic, we need your support even more, so that we can continue to offer you more quality content. Our subscription model has seen an encouraging response from many of you, who have subscribed to our online content. More subscription to our online content can only help us achieve the goals of offering you even better and more relevant content. We believe in free, fair and credible journalism. Your support through more subscriptions can help us practise the journalism to which we are committed.

Support quality journalism and subscribe to Business Standard.

Digital Editor

First Published: Wed, September 28 2016. 22:57 IST
RECOMMENDED FOR YOU