Even doing minimum prepaid recharge just to keep your number running is becoming expensive now. After Airtel, telecom company Vodafone Idea has made the 28-day entry-level prepaid plan costlier by 61 percent. For a pack with a validity of 28 days, now customers will have to pay Rs 79 instead of Rs 49. Vodafone Idea has made the Rs 79 plan an entry-level pack with a validity of 28 days in most circles across the country. The Rs 49 plan with a validity of 28 days is still the entry-level pack in some circles in Andhra Pradesh but will soon be replaced by the Rs 79 plan. In the pack of Rs 79, customers are getting talk time of Rs 54 and 200 MB data on recharge through the app. Even after this change, Vodafone Idea has the most prepaid packs of less than Rs 100. The company is providing 14 days validity pack for Rs 49 and 21 days validity pack for Rs 65 as recharge less than Rs 79.
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No SMS sending facility in entry-level pack
Under the entry plan of Rs 79, customers will not get the facility to send SMS. Vodafone Idea is not providing SMS sending facility with any combo/validity pack of Rs.100 or less. Customers who want SMS facility will have to pack unlimited calls. The minimum recharge of the unlimited pack is Rs 149 with a validity of 28 days. It needs to be noted here that 50% of Vodafone Idea subscribers still use 2G services that offer low-cost recharge packs.
Company batting for floor pricing
Vodafone has already revised the postpaid tariff. Analysts believe that to increase revenue, it needs to increase further so that telcos can make themselves in the market. According to Vodafone Idea CEO Ravinder Takkar, the change in tariff is a step in the right direction and will improve the Average Revenue Per User (ARPU), but these changes are not enough to solve the problems of the industry. Takkar said that the company is constantly in talks with the regulator regarding floor pricing. However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) believes that the floor pricing mechanism is anti-consumer. Let us tell you that Vodafone Idea is currently facing a deep financial crisis and its problems got aggravated after the Supreme Court rejected the reassessment of the outstanding AGR (Adjusted Gross Revenue). Apart from this, the company had set a target of raising 25 thousand crores in September 2020 last year, on which no progress is visible yet.
(Article: Kiran Rathee)