Mukesh Ambani owned Reliance Jio, which disrupted the telecom scene through free voice calls and cheap data tariffs, has triggered an unprecedented surge in data consumption and now it’s estimated to save around $10 billion (Rs 64,000 Crore) for consumers, said a report by Institute for Competitiveness (IFC).
Just after Jio launch in September 2016, India became the highest mobile data user in the world. Indians have consumed over 1 billion GB of data every month compared to 200 million GB earlier.
“As per our calculations, even the most conservative estimate shows that due to Jio’s entry, the annual financial savings to the consumers would be to the tune of $10 billion,” noted the report.
The report also added that Jio’s entry would also stretch country’s GDP by about 5.65 per cent, if everything else in the economy remains consistent.
IFC is the India wing of a global network of the Institute for Strategy and Competitiveness at Harvard Business School. It conducts research on competition and strategy and provides advisory services.
Currently, India boasts of one billion mobile users. Out of this 485 million are Internet users and 316 million smartphone users. Department of Telecommunications (DoT) secretary expects the smartphone user numbers to go up around 650-700 million in next two years.
Reliance Jio, which started services in September 2016, has triggered a tariff war, offering months of free data and charging cheap rates in the country with 4G network. Reliance Jio, that has been bringing a major chunk of India’s 1 .4 billion population on the Internet, has over 160 million paid users base.
Notably, it has set an internal target of reaching 400 million subscribers by the end of 2018. The penetration of Jio has sparked the consumption of audio and video streaming in a big way, and given wings to streaming platforms including Hotstar, Netflix, and Amazon Prime amongst others India.
Jio network emphasise that on an average, its users consume almost 10 GB of data, 700 minutes of voice and 134 hours of video every month. Such levels of digital consumption were not traced before Jio launch, the report said.
According to KPMG, since the launch of Jio video streaming apps have witnessed a staggering 336 per cent rise in usage. To bring more users into Jio ecosystem, it also had introduced a 4G Phone, which is offered to customers as low as Rs 1,500.
Jio feature phone, which is being offered for free with its initial paid amount to be fully refunded after three years, claimed to have a 27 per cent market share of the segment, according to Counterpoint Research report.
Mukesh Ambani has time and again stressed that Reliance Jio’s aim is to help every Indian to access the internet at a cheap cost, to harness its limitless potential.