Gearing up to compete with private players, state-owned telecom firm BSNL plans to ramp up its mobile broadband capacity by up to two-fold to 600 terrabyte (TB) in a month.
“We are seeing enormous increase in usage of mobile data on our network. We will be increasing our data network capacity to deliver high-speed 3G and other services. In South, we will double the capacity to 600 TB and in other zones, it will be up to 450 TB by November,”BSNL Chairman and MD Anupam Shrivastava said.
The loss-making state-run telecom firm did not participate in the spectrum auction and is making efforts to monetise its existing mobile airwaves.
Shrivastava said the recently launched unlimited 3G scheme for Rs 1,099 is one of the key reasons for increase in demand for mobile data on BSNL network.
The plan offers unlimited access to 3G without any speed restriction for a period of 30 days.
“In 2012, data usage on BSNL network was around 80 TB. After recent unlimited 3G Internet scheme we have seen sudden jump in data usage. In July it was around 279 TB which has now gone up to 353 TB,” Shrivastava said.
He said that average data download per customer under the plan has been around 2.2 gigabyte (GB), which means 66 GB per customer in a month. This corresponds to storing of around 100 Bollywood movies in a month in medium resolution on smartphones.
On the other hand, at a price of around Rs 1,100, private telecom operators data download limit is in the range of 7GB to 11 GB.
New entrant Reliance Jio is offering unlimited 4G data free till the end of this year. From January 1, the company will offer unlimited 4G data at starting price of Rs 19 but the ‘unlimited’ 4G usage will remain valid during night hours.
Shrivastava said that BSNL is ready to compete with any telecom operator in the market.
“… We will match any tariff in the market. It will be as competitive as any of the players in the market. We are already offering 300 GB of data usage for Rs 249 per month on fixed broadband connection. It is valid for six months and no other operator has been able to match it,” Shrivastava said.