Bharti Airtel is all set to roll out its very own VoLTE service to its consumers living in tier 1 cities in India. According to reports, the company will be debuting its 4G VoLTE service starting from Mumbai, followed by Kolkata and then other cities across India. As of now, Bharti Airtel is the second largest telecom operator in India. With the company looking to introduce the power of 4G VoLTE, it will bring access to faster internet speeds for a large chunk of its 280 million subscribers.
According to reports, Airtel is expected to launch its VoLTE services over the coming week. This service has been much anticipated after we saw how successful Reliance Jio has been, thanks to the very same technology. Airtel has also been beta testing this technology on its network across various devices. The company is also expected to release software patches to make devices compliant with 4G VoLTE.
Airtel is currently late to join the party as Jio has already been successful in swaying a lot of its customers through discount schemes and cheap overall tariffs. Jio has largely been successful in doing so owing to how cost efficient VoLTE has been. VoLTE combines the blazingly fast speeds that 4G has to offer and voice calls also ride on its Internet network as well. This means that the calls made over VoLTE are far clearer when compared to those made using either 2G or 3G technology. Also owing to voice sent over the Internet, Jio has been able to abolish roaming charges across India, which has proven as a USP to the brand.
Although Airtel is slightly late in launching VoLTE to its consumers, it will still be the first operator after Jio and this could help the company reclaim some of its lost consumers. This will be possible if the company plans its move effectively and markets it well, all of which Airtel is good at. We have also seen multiple efforts from the company in slashing prices to match that of Jio while they operated on conventional 4G; the coming of VoLTE will truly bring Airtel’s tariffs at par.
Airtel was the first operator that launched 4G in India and was then followed by others. It is high time we see more operators jump the bandwagon as the consumers are now ready with their LTE enabled devices. As of Q2 2017, one in every three phones sold in India was a VoLTE device, according to Counterpoint Research. The report also stated, “LTE capable smartphones contributed to 96 percent of smartphone shipments in India in Q2 2017.”
It is also worth noting that Idea Cellular is also working in upgrading its networks to be 4G VoLTE compliant. Idea is currently the largest telecom operator in India after it collaborated with Vodafone India to hold 34% market share and have a user base of 400 million subscribers. With the launch of the JioPhone, the VoLTE market is set to sore as the average prices stoop. The JioPhone is expected to take the 4G market by storm and give Jio a large advantage over other operators. We would also be interested in how Airtel, among other telecom operators, will look to counter this move.
We are excited to see better speeds and call quality with the coming of 4G VoLTE from Airtel and other operators, are you too? Do let us know in the comments section below