If you’re a smartphone user, who is primarily dependent on their mobile phone for internet, it’s party season. Reliance Jio declared a data war offering 28 GB + 5GB extra data for users who sign up for their Prime membership by paying Rs 99, which is a one-time fee. Of course, rivals Airtel, Vodafone and Idea Cellular are also tackling this threat.
Currently it is possible to get 1GB data per day if you’re on these networks, but with terms and conditions applied. We decode what’s happening in this free data madness where 28 GB for the month at less than Rs 400 now seems the norm in prepaid.
Now let’s start with player that is responsible for this. Reliance Jio has gotten some of us used to the idea of 1GB free data per day. For those who juggle three phones, and have a wired broadband line with 150 GB data per month, this 1GB data per day doesn’t necessarily mean anything special.
But in India, not everyone has broadband at home. Reliance Jio has essentially given people, who might have been using lower-end smartphones with limited internet data, the access to 4G internet and a total of 1GB 4G data per day at no cost.
The way to continue to this free data party: Pay Rs 99 per year, become a Jio Prime member. Then get a Rs 303 recharge, which will allow the 1GB per day limit (after you cross this limit the speed is reduced to 128Kbps). Apparently Jio is now also offering 5GB extra data for the plan, though the official website doesn’t mention this yet. Jio has a booster pack for 5GB of data is worth around Rs 201.
Even without the 5GB extra data, Jio’s offer of 28GB 4G data for 28 days at Rs 303 for prepaid customers, and 30GB data for postpaid users in this same price band is a killer deal.
Though remember it comes with terms and conditions; there’s an FUP of 1GB per day, you can’t carry left over data to the next cycle, and also Jio is restricting hotspot capabilities with Prime to just one device.
Vodafone has a similar offer where you can get 28GB data at Rs 342 or Rs 346, which are part of ‘Welcome Back Offers’. The deal: 10GB data, voice calls of up to 300 minutes per day for Rs 346. The other offer of Rs 342 has 28GB of data per month with FUP of 1GB per day. Additionally, every customer who recharges with these plans will be whitelisted, and can then continue with the same plan for the next 11 months.
In a statement to IndianExpress.com, Vodafone had this to say “Vodafone customers are diverse as are their wants. To satisfy these diverse needs and wants, Vodafone offers various segmented propositions. This is one such segmented offering and the offer is valid only till 15 March.”
We couldn’t find these plans in the MyVodafone app or even on the Vodafone website when you’re going for a recharge, at least not in the Delhi NCR circle. But in the Mumbai circle we found this one plan for Rs 356, which has 1GB data per day. The plans details are: 1GB day data + extra 1GB night data, validity of 28 days, and no talktime.
Even if you are not be able to find the 28GB offer on your Vodafone network, remember that for those with a 4G connection and smartphone, Vodafone is giving extra data.
In September, Vodafone had announced a free data plan offering up to 10 GB 4G data at the price of 1 GB plan. So a Vodafone customer with a new smartphone will get additional 9GB of 4G mobile broadband usage when they go for any plan, which has more than 1 GB data as the base.
In our case, we’ve seen been this on a Vodafone prepaid where a Rs 459 pack ends up 9GB data on a 4G smartphone.
Airtel has joined the fray as well. The prepaid recharge is a Rs 345 plan which promises 1GB of 4G data per day, along with free local, STD calls. But there’s a condition on how to use this 1GB data: 500MB during the day, 500MB during the night. The time limit is March 31 for customers to sign up, and again just like Vodafone, this recharge will apply for the next 11 months once the deadline is up.
On the Airtel recharge website, we saw this offer reflected for Airtel numbers in the Delhi and Tamil Nadu circle. The number needs to be on a 4G smartphone with 4G internet activated for this offer to show.
Details are: unlimited local and STD calls, along with 28GB data for 28days. The data is divided as daily 0.5GB day and 0.5GB for night (12AM-6AM). Airtel has not officially commented on the offer, though it looks like some of these schemes and incentives with extra data have been around for some months.
In October, Airtel has announced a new data offer for all its customers who got a new 4G-enabled smartphone, where they could claim 10GB 4G data at Rs 259 recharge. Users could try out this recharge a maximum of three times within 90 days to avail the offer.
Idea Cellular offering unlimited voice and 500 MB of data a day for 28 days at Rs 348. However, this is not an open market offer, and Idea Cellular users will need to check if they are eligible on the MyIdea app. Also Idea Cellular is offering this to customers with low data usage, in order to encourage them to use more internet.