Airtel Justifies Its VoIP Stand..Still Makes No Sense

“We, therefore, believe that VoIP services in their current form are not tenable for us as a business. As a result, we will charge separately for VoIP services.”

Airtel plans to charge you for calls made using services like Viber, Skype etc. And while this is so anti net-neutrality, Airtel has come up with a justification which goes as follows.

Over the last twenty years, we have invested over Rs. 140, 000 crores in rolling out telecommunications services in every nook and corner of the country. In addition, we have paid over Rs. 50, 000 crore in terms of government levies in just 5 years. Going forward, we are committed to rolling out data networks across the country. In order to ensure this, our business must be viable and sustainable. Our voice services that are enjoyed by every one of our customers provides us the capacity to continuously invest in and upgrade our networks on an ongoing basis. We, therefore, believe that VoIP services in their current form are not tenable for us as a business. As a result, we will charge separately for VoIP services.
However, in line with our philosophy of putting our customers above all else – we are committed to making VoIP services extremely affordable and attractive by ensuring adequate minutes for a very small charge on VoIP.
As a result, in line with the recent announcement of our VoIP (Voice over internet protocol) pack, Airtel would like to clarify the following:

  • Our Customers can enjoy a superior VoIP calling experience on Airtel’s network by choosing from a range of new VoIP specific data packs that will soon be launched. For prepaid users, the VoIP exclusive pack will be priced at Rs. 75 for 75MB with a validity of 28 days. This will allow customers to make between 200 and 250 minutes of calling. Similarly, affordable VoIP plans will soon be launched for postpaid customers. There would be no other charges in respective of VoIP calls.
  • The VoIP update is not applicable with immediate effect. This change will be implemented in a phased manner over the next few weeks. In all cases, our customers will proactively be informed about these VoIP charges in advance through the company’s standard communication channels like SMS, USSD pop-up, email etc.
  • Prepaid customers who have purchased data plans before 24th December 2014 are entitled to use all services opted-for till their packs are consumed or expire, following which, the new terms & conditions on VoIP usage will apply.

Time to move out of Airtel network which is facing severe QoS issue?
Where will they stop? Charge Internet service companies for network access? Is Airtel paving way for Reliance to come and f**k them with 4G rollout?
What’s the role of TRAI here?

  1. Today, I went to buy potato. The vendor said Potato is Rs 10/kg if I want to make Curry and Rs 30/kg if I want to make Fries.

  2. Airtel is there to run a business not some charity so if consumers have a problem they will stop using its services or pay the extra amounts as simple as that.In terms of quality airtel is providing much better quality than existing mobile operators like BSNL , Reliance and Vodafone.
    Expectations of customers a business has to address the needs of sensible customers not free-stuff lookers.

  3. My response as a consumer:
    What I have anything to do with how much you paid in your government levies.. It didn’t happen all of a sudden… Internet has been there for more than a decade, and everybody knew that this day would come.
    You as a company, couldn’t keep up with growing expectations of the customers. Now, if your highly paid Suits can’t evolve your business models, that is not my fault. I pay for my data pack and how I use it should not be your concern.

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