Reliance Jio effect: Now Idea Cellular mulls 4G VoLTE nationwide launch
Keeping up with the competition from Reliance Jio, Idea is planning to deploy VoLTE services nationwide.
- Idea is mulling over VoLTE nationwide launch with Nokia and Ericsson.
- Data usage on the 4G network increased to 67.6 billion MB in Q1FY18.
- Idea’s 4G network utilization was below 30% in Q1.
Idea Cellular on Thursday posted a net loss of Rs 815 crore for the first quarter ended June 30, 2017. To stop the Reliance Jio onslaught, Idea said that it will launch VoLTE on its 4G network by calendar year 2018.
The telecom arm of the Aditya Birla Group may be in talks with telecom gear vendors like Ericsson and Nokia, a report by TelecomTalk said.
During a conference call with investors on Tuesday, India’s telecom major Bharti Airtel also spoke about launching VoLTE services in India by 2018.
Currently only Reliance Jio has a nationwide presence of VoLTE services in India.
In its Q1FY18 result announcement, Idea Cellular said it will deploy 4G network using 2300 Mhz and 2500 MHz spectrum band in five of its markets in FY18.
“The planned deployment of 2300 MHz and 2500 MHz spectrum band in 5 of its leadership markets during the current financial year will further boost Idea’s 4G capacity in these key markets,” Idea said.
Idea reported a consolidated net loss of Rs 815.9 crore in Q1FY18.
“The upheaval in the Indian wireless industry continued in Q1FY18, despite the new entrant slowly migrating from ‘free services’ to ‘paid services’ but with heavily discounted unlimited voice and data pricing plans,” the company said.
The company’s total mobile data users on Idea network declined from 4.22 crore in Q4FY17 to 3.81 crore in Q1FY18, the company said.
Data usage on the 4G network increased to 67.6 billion MB in Q1FY18.
“Despite such accelerated growth in 4G data volume, Idea’s 4G network utilization (excluding still to be deployed 2300MHz and 2500MHz capacity spectrum) remains below 30%,” the company said.
The company claimed it added 5724 new 4G cell sites and 1608 new 3G cell sites in the first quarter.
Number of 2G cell sites declined from 131,486 in the fourth quarter to 131,059 in the quarter.