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All about Reliance Jio: Mukesh Ambani announces dirt cheap data plans, free voice calling

Speed News Desk | Updated on: 10 February 2017, 1:47 IST

Reliance Group Chairman Mukesh Ambani talked about the biggest launch of the year - Reliance Jio at the mega Annual General Meeting held on 1 September. Jio is Reliance's biggest push in the telecom sector betting on 4G services.

The commercial launch of the service is yet to be announced and it might take a while. The company offered Jio SIM cards on a trial basis which includes three months of free 4G usage with no limits on the amount of data you can use. The announcement created ripples and one could see iPhone-like queues at numerous Reliance stores.

Here are the top comments made by Mukesh Ambani and everything you should know about the much-awaited Jio 4G services:

1) "India is ranked 155 of 230 countries for mobile, broadband, and internet services."

2) "With the launch of Jio, India's rank will go to the top 10."

3) Why is it called 'Jio'?

The service is called Jio because " it means to live." Ambani mentioned "there is nothing more precious in this world than life. Data is the oxygen of digital life and it must never be in short supply."

4) Ambani said that Jio is in line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of Digital India.

He added that most telecom service providers have not built their networks for data and internet but solely for calling and SMS service. "Legacy telcos are trying to retrofit data to their networks."

5) What is Jio?

In Ambani's words - "It's India's first all IP network, data strong network, mobile video network, true 4G covering 18,000 cities and 2 lakh villages, Volte, 5G, and 6G ready."

The IP design of the network makes the Jio the most future proof network in the world.

The network is expected to cover 90% of India's population by March 2017.

Taking on other telcos, Ambani said that Jio is the largest 4G-only network in the world today. He said it's the only 4G-only network in India and "not mostly 2G, sometimes 3G, and rarely 4G". He also highlighted that Jio has the necessary foundation to be ready for virtual reality and augmented reality.

Ambani made several other important announcements on new devices and services. Below are the key device and service announcements:

- Lyf devices have been announced starting at Rs 2,999.

- The JioFi router has been launched at just Rs 1,999.

- Moving to apps, the ioTV app lets you watch 300 plus live TV channels and 40 HD channels, while the JioCinema app has 6,000 movies, 60,000 music videos in 10 languages.

- Ambani announced Jio apps bouquet - worth Rs 15,000 per year - which will be free for a year to all Jio users till Diwali 2017.

- Users can sign up for Jio using Aadhaar card in Mumbai and Delhi. With an Aadhaar card, you can walk out of a Jio store within 15 minutes with a working connection, Ambani said.

- Tariffs: Customers need to pay only for voice or data. Not both. All voice calls for Jio customers will be absolutely free (Wow). Calls to all networks across India are free. Roaming charges also zero across India. Jio is aimed at putting a halt to all voice calling charges in the country.

- Rates: Jio will have a base rate that's one-tenth of existing rates. Data rates are 5 paise per MB. Rs 50 per GB. Jio users will not face any blackouts, mentions Ambani. "When you need to send a message on Diwali (or other holidays) operators charge double the rate." Not on Jio."

Users can see the bill on real time basis and there will be no bill generated at the end of the month. Jio price starts at Rs. 19 per day. Goes up to Rs. 4,999 per month for 75GB of data.

- Student plan: Those with a valid student ID will be able to get 25 % more data on Jio tariffs. "Jio is connecting a majority of schools and colleges with WiFi," outlines Ambani.

Ambani has set a target of 100 million customers in the shortest possible time to create new world record. Jio will be rolling out fibre to the home wired Internet to select cities. Terming it as 'Datagiri', Ambani said that "starting Monday, September 5, Jio's boquet of apps, all services available for everyone absolutely free. Till 31 December 2016."

With such rock-bottom prices for high-end services, Reliance Jio is sure to give Airtel, Idea, Vodafone and other telecom players a run for their money.

First published: 1 September 2016, 1:25 IST