Attracting internet users with cheap broadband connections has been the bone of contention between most service providers in India. Now entering the broadband battle is Bharti Airtel, which is offering high bandwidth at low prices.
Bharti which has about 12.5 lakh broadband subscribers is offering one Mbps speed at Rs.1699 and 512 kbps at Rs.1099 as well as additional free VAS (Value Added Services) bundles worth Rs.500 every month, reports Hindustan Times. Earlier, one Mbps broadband speed was priced at Rs.2,999 per month. This is a 43 percent cut. The 512 kbps connection was priced at Rs.1599. It has come down by 31 percent.
K Srinivas, Joint President- Telemedia Services, Bharti Airtel said, “With this latest announcement, Airtel also adds to its rich broadband service portfolio that now includes high-speed and reliable wired broadband at 16 Mbps and cutting-edge products like the low-cost online computer – Net PC.” This will also allow customers currently experiencing 512 Kbps to double their broadband speed to one Mbps by paying an additional Rs.100 only.
In response to this launch, Bharti’s main competitors, MTNL (Mahanagar Telephone Nigam) and BSNL (Bharat Sanchar Nigam) have said that they will offer services at lower than Bharti prices. “If our private competition reduces tariff, then we will certainly react and have a look at our tariff,” said MTNL Director (technical) Kuldeep Singh. “We are always more competitive than our competitors.” A BSNL official who did not want to be identified said, “New plans are being finalized and we will soon announce them. Our plans will be much lower than our competitors.”
While broadband service providers continue their price war, customers who stand to gain from these offers are only too happy.