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Old 4th September 2009, 10:39   #16
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Heh! Do you guys know that SMS actually costs the operator nothing? These guys are absolutely minting their panties off with the mobile revolution in India.
Latest news from the mobile content industry | Mobile Entertainment

Google for: sms more expensive than hubble

Remembered an old news article.
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Old 4th September 2009, 10:39   #17
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These unlimited free calls schemes cannot survive in the long run. These are only marketing gimmicks to draw customer attention in the short duration.
On the contrary, the current prices are artificially kept high. They can easily reduce the price if not for the silly law on VOIP. ISPs can provide unlimited calling for a low fixed price, if the law is changed. But that would bankrupt BSNL/MTNL, so the law bans such technology.

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Hi Samurai, which type of carrier he is using?
Comcast cable.

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Those who are happy listening 3G technology coming to India, hold on read about LTE (Long Term Evolution). This is 4G Technology and everything is finalized by 3GPP. Implementation already started.
Started where? You mean in India, 4G?
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Old 4th September 2009, 10:45   #18
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Wait until department of telecom removes the artificial restriction on VOIP. Currently it is illegal to mix IP traffic and Indian PSTN traffic in a single call. They have done this to keep BSNL/MTNL in business. TRAI has recommended removal of this silly ban. Once that happens, telephone calls will become virtually free. Vonage kind of companies can come to India and we can get unlimited minutes for 1000 bucks a month.

Imagine, the real cost for ISD and local call will be same. The words ISD and STD will fade away and everything will be local call or just voice call. There will be no money in pure voice. Companies have to start making money on video services, and conferencing and other imaginative services.
How many people find 1000 bucks a month cheap? What you say has already happened in west. Still, the revenue comes through voice. Since they get majority of revenues from voice, data seems low cost.

The telecom operators are working out the models to charge data calls depending on what application (voice, video etc.,) is being carried.

Also, in future data and voice will be carried mostly through wireless. With such vast investments that the carriers make on this infrastructure, they will not let you have anything for free.
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Old 4th September 2009, 10:46   #19
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Telephone balance may not be a limiting factor but human psyche does have one. You wouldn't want to exhaust all topics to talk in one day and then resort to "aur kya" which is the most irritating sentence I get to hear from anyone.

Yes, you are right, Based in Qatar I use VOIP to call home, its costs 60 paise / minute. I end up calling home & freinds sometimes 2 to 3 times a day & then its " AUR KYA "
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Old 4th September 2009, 10:49   #20
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It doesn't have to be marketing gimmick. Technology is becoming cheaper.

Last week I heard from a friend in NJ that his new Internet plan gives him 50Mbps speed for both upload and download, this is as measured by speedtest.net by himself. No limits on volume either. What price? $99 per month.

I just fell out of the chair.
This has to do with the latest technology "fiber to home", Verizon offers very high speeds in select parts of US & BELL does it for Canada effectively replacing the twisted pairs in the access networks which had a bandwidth limitation of 100mbps.

Bharti is offering high bandwidth to internet users by taking advantage of
the fiber to home tech.
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Old 4th September 2009, 10:58   #21
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srishiva, I work in the area of enterprise telephony. I do have an idea about telephony infrastucture.

In Internet browsing, it is hard to predict the geographic traffic pattern. Even now most people connect to US websites, say like Team-BHP. In VOIP, you can have localised traffic. Mostly people call within the country or even within the state or city. Marketing guys have huge opportunity to create all kind of plans based on usage patterns.
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Old 4th September 2009, 11:23   #22
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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Comcast cable.
I mean ADSL cannot deliver 50Mbps speed. Would find out what type of broadband it is.

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Started where? You mean in India, 4G?
LOL, It is distant dream Samurai. Even 3G not came properly here. After that many thing to come before LTE 3.2G, 3.5G, 3.9G and then comes 4G and LTE. We are very slow in implementing technologies, it comes to India only after it expire or going to expire in developed world.

Lets we all keep day dreaming and let government to increase ridiculed license fees so that no operator willing to take even 3G.

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Old 4th September 2009, 11:29   #23
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Even that Tata's are here to make profit, if not for them, but atleast for their shareholders. Yes, Technology is getting cheaper by the day, but the infrastructure to support all the crowd jumping in isn't going to come cheap, even if they find innovative ways to share their infrastructure.

I remember the days when Hutch introduced night-time free Hutch to Hutch calls to prevent Aircel from getting market share in Chennai and their once very dependable network 'went to the dogs'. Calls to any Hutch number wouldn't go through from the evening and text were delivered after a few days. Hope Indicom doesn't suffer the same fate.
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Old 4th September 2009, 11:30   #24
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Totally agree with Samurai that the current prices are artificially kept high in the telecom world.

But we need to understand that these prices are based on current technologies and current laws (which may be biased towards BSNL/MTNL).

The telecom operators are in the business to make profits, they are not offering their services for the sake of charity. Also, they have made huge investments for setting up their network throughout the country. They also have to bear the running costs and rental costs for this infrastructure. They have to keep the prices high to keep their business profitable.

And why do we single out telecom opertators for making profits ?

- We never curse fast food chains or luxury restaurants for selling us overpriced (and unhealthy) food.
- We never curse garment manufacturers for selling us overpriced garments.
- we never curse sports goods manufacturers for selling us overpriced shoes.
- We never curse electronics manufacturers for selling us expensive gadgets.
- We never curse Indian IT services companies for overcharging their foreign clients.

Even for the abovementioned products/services, the price of manufacturing/service cost would be much less than what is charged to the customer. These companies are also running profitable business just like a telecom operator.

I would still call it a marketing gimmick because it contains hidden terms and conditions :
- This pricing is not for unlimited call duration but only for 10 minutes.
- This pricing is valid only with the purchase of a new handset.

I would like to see an advertisement which does not say * Conditions apply.

Here's an idea, why not add a poll on how long you think this offer would last :
- less than 3 months
- 3 to 6 months
- more than 6 months

I vote for less than 3 months.

Disclaimer : I am in no way related to any telecom operator.

Rohan,
Bangalore
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Old 4th September 2009, 11:32   #25
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Default Marketing gimmick?

I opine that this is a marketing gimmick but the benefit is real. Call charged on a per second basis or per call basis will bring our expenses down. But the bigger question is, will people like us lap it up?

3 or 4 years ago, Tata was the first to introduce lifetime validity prepaid connections. What was the result? Airtel grew bigger.
BPL mobile was the first to launch per second billing some 8 years back. What was the result? Vodafone / Hutch / Max grew bigger in Bombay / Maharashtra.

Lowering price will not get you more customers in the long run. We buy a phone because we want to talk (primary reason) and listen to music or send messages (secondary reasons). If that is not fulfilled, free calls, free minutes, lower rates...nothing will have any effect. That is what Airtel did. They simply bet everything on 'Airtel everywhere'. And Vodafone promised impeccable services. The result is clear. They are the two biggest by a huge measure.

And Tata, that launched ground breaking pricing in telecom, is at the bottom of the pile.

Conculsion: While price might excite a consumer initially, it is quality and deliverability of the product that matters in the long run. Here is a thought: Chinese made mobile phones have loads of features at less than Rs. 3000. Why, then, is Nokia leading the market?
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Old 4th September 2009, 11:54   #26
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Tata may have done away with the pulse based pricing. But is it really sustainable. In India a telco needs to pay the operator on whose network the calss land, a termination charge. This is on a per pulse basis.

Tata will be forced to withdraw this offer after some time due to the following reasons:

1) It will lead to its networks getting clogged as a section of the population will talk on and on.
2) The termination charges will make it a loss making proposition.

Last year, Tata Teleservices incurred a Rs 800 cr loss. this will only go up as it ups capex on rolling out its gsm services and acquires more customers.

In the long run, a business has to be profitable to survive and prosper. Banks will not fund a company which keeps on making losses and the shareholders will also not like to stay invested in such a company.

Customes may benefit in the short term, but what will they do when telcos start going bankrupt. We will face a situation similar to the power sector where fresh investments do not materialise as the utilities are unable to cover their costs leading to huge power shortage.

IN LIFE THERE CAN BE NO FREE LUNCHES.
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Old 4th September 2009, 16:00   #27
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I wouldn't call it a gimmick but a good use of Marketing Principles

Also these need customers to support their existing infrastructure. Why else do you think only companies like Tata Indicom & Reliance(or other Operators with less volume in a circle) offer such schemes?

The idea is to get new customers as not everyone who gets a connection for such schemes disconnects it once the scheme is over.
Interesting.
My q is why reliance and tata give such schemes and Vodafone and airtel dont. Is this something related to GSM vs cdma technology or voda and airtel are so big they dont feel the need to introduce schemes like this?

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Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
On the contrary, the current prices are artificially kept high. They can easily reduce the price if not for the silly law on VOIP. ISPs can provide unlimited calling for a low fixed price, if the law is changed. But that would bankrupt BSNL/MTNL, so the law bans such technology.

Comcast cable.

Started where? You mean in India, 4G?
I had worked for comcast 4-5 years back for a short span. They do introduce many attractive schemes from time to time however the users are always complaining about their services. Might be improved now. But 50mbps speed at a good price is still a dream for indian users.

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Originally Posted by srishiva View Post
How many people find 1000 bucks a month cheap? What you say has already happened in west. Still, the revenue comes through voice. Since they get majority of revenues from voice, data seems low cost.

Also, in future data and voice will be carried mostly through wireless. With such vast investments that the carriers make on this infrastructure, they will not let you have anything for free.
I agree not many find 1000bucks cheap.
However many like me will be first in the queue if such a scheme is offered(Specially the corporates and businessman who do a lot of talking on the phone).

I think this is indeed a good scheme.
I am using tata indicom to indicom free scheme since 3 years for postpaid and atleast in ncr region i find their connection better than vodafone which is my other number.
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Old 4th September 2009, 17:02   #28
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I get to call India at $ 0.02 per minute using a pennysim at $8 per month. Thats 82 paise per min at a monthly rental of Rs 330 !!

You get a regular mobile sim and it uses a combination of voice call (for connecting to their VOIP gateway) + VOIP itself for the onward connection. The local voice call leg of the comms is free and only the VOIP leg is charged to your account.

Only catch is that you have to map your destination number to a set of local numbers (smartdial nos). But they have iPhone, WM (beta) and S60 (beta) apps which do this seamlessly. i.e. read your address book and map it to unique smart dial numbers. If a number you dial isn't in the phone's address book, no worries.. the app will sense this, dial a pilot number and then dials out the number you dialed, much like a calling card (but automatic!!).

Of course its a 3G USIM, so they have a 3G data bundles at $8.88 for 500mb per month and so on. This rate is lower than what some full fledged telcos offer here !!

So, good voice quality + convenience of a mobile + unlimited free calls between pennysims + no contract + low prices + 3G data + still have the option of using a higher priced voice call if needed.

Sounds good to be true.. But it is true !! Innovation at its best.

Last edited by spadival : 4th September 2009 at 17:10.
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Old 4th September 2009, 22:56   #29
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4. This new starter kit allows keep talking benefit only with the purchase of a new handset on the tata indicom network , if sim is used with old & used handsets , the default tariffs of Rs 1/min for Local calls & 1.5/min for STD Calls . Local SMS @ Rs1 & National SMS @ Rs 1.5
Existing customers can recharge with Rs 96 voucher and opt for this scheme. No need to buy new handset/connection. Just confirmed with the Customer care.
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