While on one hand Reliance Jio accuses incumbent operators of milking the sector using borrowed money, older players like Airtel, Vodafone and Idea blame free voice and data offering by the Mukesh Ambani firm for bleeding the sector. To become eligible for the offer, a user will have to upgrade to 4G smartphone from a 2G/3G mobile and would need to remain on the same Airtel network. Postpaid customers will get 30 GB of free data (with rollover) in their first bill cycle over and above their plan benefits.
Bharti Airtel said it will now give 30 GB of free 4G data to any of its existing customers who upgrade to a 4G phone from a 2G or 3G device. It's part of the brand's "Mera Pehla Smartphone" project which now gives Rs 2000 as cashback to people who buy certain handsets from Nokia, Samsung and Intex.
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While stepping up the data capacities and taking services deeper into rural and unconnected areas, the massive roll-out would mean the addition of one new site every hour to Airtel's future-ready network in Madhya Pradesh & Chhattisgarh, the telco said. This campaign did not go in well with Mukesh Ambani's Jio as it filed a suit in the Delhi High Court against Bharti Airtel for reliefs on being aggrieved by "the false, deceptive and misleading commercial/advertisements". Subscribers have to pay for the data charges as per the tariff rates and only subscription to Hotstar is free. Prepaid subscribers who qualify for the freebie will get it in the form of 1GB of data per day for 30 days. Airtel says clients can check the qualification and claim the free data benefits by either calling the toll-free number 51111 or on My Airtel App.
This is the most recent data offering from the main telecom specialist co-op as it tries to battle the notoriety of Jio's 4G benefit in the nation.