Reliance Jio Withdraws Summer Surprise Offer After TRAI’s Order
Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. withdrew its Summer Surprise offer on Thursday after India’s telecom regulator advised the company against it.
Reliance Jio, which started charging for its services since April 1 this year, extended its deadline to opt for its Prime membership by 15 days to avoid service disruption for customers transitioning to its paid services. Under the Summer Surprise scheme, existing subscribers or new customers who became a Prime member by paying Rs 99 could avail the new offer by buying a Rs 303 recharge till April 15.
Users could avail complimentary services for three months starting April 15, in addition to the benefits they already enjoyed under their purchased plan.
The Telecom Regulatory Authority (TRAI) clarified that users who subscribed to the offer before it is discontinued can avail the benefits, Reliance Jio said in its statement. The company said it is “in the process of fully complying with the regulator’s advice” but did not give a date by when the offer will be fully withdrawn.
The Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Jio, which disrupted the Indian telecom market with its six-month-long free data services, triggered a tariff war and consolidation among rivals, which feared losing market share to the new entrant.
In September last year, the company rolled out operations by offering free voice and data up to 4GB (gigabytes) a day till the end of the year. It extended the offer till March 31, but capped data at 1GB a day.
By February, the company said it had signed up over 100 million customers. This was possible through an Aadhaar-based registration for SIM cards, which involved almost no paperwork at all.
Ambani in February unveiled the operator’s tariff plans, including the special Jio Prime membership, which would extend the ongoing data offerings for one more year at Rs 303 per month.
For those not opting for Jio Prime, the operator claimed that it would give 20 percent more data than incumbent operators at the same prices.