Top 5 This Week

Related Posts

Vodafone Idea (Vi) To Get Aggressive In Punjab-Haryana, Enhance Network Capabilities

Announces launch of L 900 band spectrum and voice over Wi-fi (VoWifi) technology for superior indoor coverage, better call quality and data experience
Is innovating for a complete digital experience via Vi App for utility payments, entertainment, games, cloud gaming and much more

Despite having lost customers in the hordes to its rivals Airtel and Jio, due to lack of adequate investment in infrastructure over the past few years, the third largest private telecom operator in the country Vodafone Idea (Vi) still commands a sizable 1.3 crore customers, and a 22-23% market share, in Punjab and Haryana.

Now the Aditya Birla Group and Vodafone Group partnership company, is poised to infuse massive network investments, in the range of Rs 50,000-Rs 55,000 crore (it successfully raised Rs 18,000 crore in an FPO recently), in the next three years across the country in an aggressive move to drive superior coverage and capacity expansion in 4G, and rollout 5G technologies, thereby majorly rebuilding on its subscriber base and drive revenues.

A substantial portion of these investments are going to be made in Punjab and Haryana, a very important market for the company, Chief Operating Officer of Vodafone Idea Abhijit Kishore revealed in a press event here on Thursday.

Creating differentiators

Apart from achieving superior coverage and capacity expansion to meet the exploding demand for data from retail and enterprise customers in 4G and rolling out 5G technologies (within next six months), Vi is laying increasing emphasis on creating differentiators for an enhanced customer experience.

Under a strategy to compel customer engagements, Vi is taking market initiatives to drive ARPU (average revenue per unit) improvement and customer retention. Among these initiatives is to drive extraction in new 4G geographies (Kishore informed that contrary to popular belief, an estimated 30-35% customers are still on 2G network), scale up share of primary SIM by delivering best in class experience and offering differentiated propositions, and lead digitalisation of customer service and distribution, supporting upsell and better retention.

Launching L 900 band spectrum

While asserting that Vi already has a strong network of 12,000 towers and Vi touchpoints, including 350 Vi stores, mini stores and shops, besides 800+ distributors and 56,000+ recharge outlets, in Punjab and Haryana and has achieved 97.7% population coverage, Kishore announced that it will be soon launching the L 900 band spectrum and voice over Wi-fi (VoWifi) technology in Punjab for superior indoor coverage, better call quality and data experience.

Unlimited data at night

Among the differentiators, Kishore claimed that Vi is the only telco to offer a daily data plan called ‘Vi Hero Unlimited’ which apart from giving unlimited calling, enables a customer to access unlimited data from midnight to 6 a.m. during which one can surf, stream, binge and repeat without any constraints. It also offers free subscription to OTT content and daily data rollover to weekends.

Additionally, ‘Choose Your benefits’ has been introduced for post-paid subscribers wherein customers get an added option of choosing benefits as per their requirements.

A ‘One of a kind’ initiative introduced recently is the ‘Vi Guarantee’ under which consumers, with a 5G or a new 4G handset, and subscribed to a daily data unlimited pack of Rs 299 or above, get 130 GB extra data free every year @ 10 GB every 28 days for 13 consecutive recharge cycles.

Cloud gaming

Kishore emphasised that Vi is among the first players to offer the unmatched experience of cloud gaming, which does not require expensive hardware like computers and consoles, and can be enjoyed remotely on pretty much any compatible device like a TV, tablet, etc. Cloud gaming also lets you save your progress midgame, then resume later with another device, no matter where you are, provided you have a subscription and an internet connection.

To drive affinity among youth and win market share, there is Vi Movies &TV – one app which gives you access to 130 OTTs & 400 TV channels.

All-encompassing Vi app

Sharing details of the initiatives taken by Vi over the past year or so in enhancing the consumers’ digital experience, Kishore said the Vi App offers entertainment like other OTT apps, with over 400 live TV channels and Video on Demand (VoD) content.

It also offers games like Free Fire and Call of Duty, and supports utility bill payments, enabling users to pay electricity, water, LPG bills, recharge FastTag, renew DTH or broadband subscriptions, and pay insurance premiums or loan EMIs.

Through Vi App, user can raise service request anytime anywhere, do easy recharge, pay bill etc., he added.

He also informed that given the popularity and growth potential of OTT services, Vi is expanding its bundling plans. Currently, Vi offers OTT bundles with Amazon Prime, Netflix, Disney+ Hotstar, SonyLiv, and SunNxt. More partnerships are coming soon.

Big player worldwide in IoT

The company, being among the big players worldwide in IoT (internet of things), enterprise customers also offer it big business opportunities in cloud facilities apart from mobility offerings. Kishore said 25 crore electricity meters across the country are being converted into smart meters, out of which 2-2.5 crore have already been converted, which would also require IoT, which will also be majorly deployed with the increasing popularity of connected cars, he added.

Recent tariff hikes

The Vi COO claimed that in the recent industrywide tariff hikes, the company had taken care not to pinch the pockets of the lower strata of the society too much. The enhancements in the cheapest packs/plans have generally been in the range of 10-11% while these have been much stiffer in case of higher value packs/plans.

So, the cheapest unlimited voice plan which cost Rs 179, and offers 28 days validity and 2GB of mobile data, now costs Rs 199

Similarly, the cheapest daily data plan of Rs 269 with 28 days validity and 1GB data per day has been increased to Rs 299

However, the daily data plan of Rs 479 with 56 days validity and 1.5 GB data per day now costs Rs 579.

Popular Articles