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Jio to Increase Mobile Services Rates from December 1
 
Reliance Jio Infocomm (Jio) will increase its tariffs by 20-21% from December 1, following similar moves by rivals, in a bid to bring in more revenue from each customer. However, Jio's prices remain slightly lower than rivals Bharti Airtel and Vodafone Idea(Vi) in some plans, as the market leader aims to touch 500 milion users.

"In line with its commitment to further strengthen a sustainable telecom industry, where every Indian is empowered with a true digital life, Jio today announced its new unlimited plans," said the Mukesh Ambani-led telco in a statement on Sunday.

"These plans will provide the best value in the industry. Upholding the Jio promise of providing the best-quality service at the lowest price globally, Jio customers will continue to be the biggest beneficiaries," it added.

From December 1, the telco’s price of its JioPhone subscribers will have an entry-level plan of Rs 91, about 21% higher than the earlier one. For the non feature phone subscribers, the plans of Rs 129 at the base will now be for Rs 155. There has been a hike in other 11 tariff plans and telco has included four add on data packs as well.

Airtel and Vi's tariffed voice plan start at Rs 99.

Jio had to maintain a fine balancing act between generating higher average revenue per user (ARPU) and increasing its customer base, say analysts.

This, especially after the telco lost 11 million subscribers in the July-September quarter, to end the period with 429.5 million users.

The price hike in the telecom sector will improve average revenue per user (ARPU) - an integral parameter, for the entire sector by 15-17% over the next two -three quarter, say analysts. As of September end results, Jio's ARPU was Rs 143.6, while Airtel and Vi clocked in ARPU of Rs 153 and Rs 109 respectively.

"...the current hike should increase the sector ARPU by 15-20% to Rs 155-160 next fiscal from around Rs 135 last fiscal year,” Crisil Ratings said after Airtel hiked tariffs.


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