TRAI makes per second tariff plan mandatory

TRAI (Telecom Regulatory Authority of India) has made it mandatory for telecom operators to offer per second billing.

“After consideration of all facts including the feedback from the consultation process, the Authority has decided not to interfere with the currently prevailing ceiling of 25 tariff plans that can be offered by a Service Provider at any given point of time.  However, at the same time the Authority feels that there has to be  at least  one tariff plan each for both post-paid and pre-paid subscribers with uniform pulse rate i.e. per second pulse,  across all service providers so as to enable the subscribers to compare the tariffs offered by different service providers.

In order to ensure that  per second billing remains an assured alternative option for all subscribers, it has been decided to mandate that all service providers shall offer  at least one pre-paid and one post-paid tariff plan with the pulse rate of one second for local and national long distance calls.    The service providers will be at liberty to offer alternative tariff plans with any pulse rate within the overall ceiling of 25 tariff plans.”

Even for premium rate services (like voting for contests), TRAI has mandated that the tariff can maximum be Four times of the applicable local  call/SMS  charges in the Tariff  plan  opted by the subscriber, as ceiling.

“For the purpose of ceiling tariff specified in this Order, the higher tariff for Local calls/SMS  applicable in the plan  would be taken into account in situations where more than one rate is  available.    Similarly the free or discounted call/SMS charge, if any, provided for specific duration through Special Tariff Vouchers, shall not be reckoned for the purpose of the specified ceiling as these are not the rates applicable in the Tariff plan. Since the rates indicated are by way of ceiling, SPs are at liberty to fix any rate less than four times of Local call/SMS tariff. “

Now that TRAI is dictating the pricing model for operators, is there a room to innovate? OR will it pave the way for new complex tariff plans?

– Download TRAI amendment report

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