A not so earth shattering news comes from the Airtel front about the introduction of its lifetime prepaid card at a lower price point. Now the card goes for just Rs. 99 which will also carry a talktime of Rs. 10. However, as with other lifetime prepaid cards this one also has a string attached to it. A user needs to refill his account with a minimum of Rs. 200 every 6 months. The new price is effective from today.
Airtel has finally launched its impending GSM services in the Sri Lankan island. The service will be offered by Airtel’s subsidiary, Bharti Airtel Lanka Pvt Ltd while the network will be managed by Huawei and IBM as a partner to manage the infrastructure.
Airtel is making its presence felt in the region. To promote the service, they are offering free SIM cards to any users from Jan 12 till Jan 25. However, the user needs to activate the card by recharging it with a Rs. 100 coupon.
In a move to lure new users, Airtel launched some new initiatives in the Delhi NCR circle. The prepaid packs are aimed at bringing in affordability, by offering reduced call rates for both local and STD. Here are the details:
Plan 1: STD @ Re.1: For STD calling
- STD Calling at Re.1
- Rs.90 voucher for 3 months validity
- Rs.40 voucher for 1 month validity
Plan 2: Local calling @ 60paise: For local calling
- Calls to Airtel numbers at 50 paise
- Calls to other networks at 60 paise
- Rs.124 voucher for a 3 month validity
- Rs.49 voucher for a month’s validity.
Plan 3: Local and STD: A combo of the above plans
- STD Calling @ Re.1
- Calls to Airtel numbers at 50paise
- Calls to other networks at 60paise
- Rs.201 for a 3 month validity
- Rs.77 for a month’s validity
We Say: The prepaid packs look quite lucrative and the multiple price points at which they are being offered, helps it to be more attractive for users. We feel that all the three are good value for money, especially the last one.
Airtel has done it again with their new commercial. With the right elements, this ad touches each and every Indian. It brings out the core values and somehow manages to put across its message to the consumers. The core elements: The family, the village setting and the attachment between the father and son beats any other ad in its clan.
Though the idea may not be to sell, it surely adds to the brand value. We think that the Indian touch along with its great selection of actors is what makes the ad stand out. Bharti’s move to have ads based on the same platform seem to have worked, but they tend to evaporate too soon, unlike other ads in the category.
However, in terms of adding equity, and getting the rural consumer interested, this ad definitely does the job for Airtel. And with millions of them enrolling themselves to the telecom revolution, this might just touch the right chord at the right time.
“I Miss you so much, It hurts….” Yes, we are talking about the new Airtel Voice SMS commercial that you must have come across on TV. What the ad tries to do, is rope in people to use the Voice SMS service on offer, as a substitute to the normal SMS. The USP would definitely be the ‘jazbaat’ or the ‘feeling’ that is added to an SMS, which you could not do with a normal SMS.
Though the idea has been put across fairly well, the service could find very less takers. SMS is generally used for short and precise communication and if I wanted the recipient to hear my voice, I would rather call. Anyways, if you’re still interested in using the service, add a star (*) before dialing a number and record your SMS. Each Voice SMS is charged at 75 paise.
Telcos in India have finally realised the true potential of the rural markets. As most of the subscribers come from these areas, Airtel decided to roll out a dedicated prepaid plan to please them.
Quite evident by its name, Airtel’s Rural Pack is one of them. This pack is available to users residing in villages with a population of less than 20,000. Here are the details:
- Price: Rs.50
- Talktime: Nil
- Validity: Nil
We Say: Rural Pack is one of a kind. This is because it provides free talktime to users over a period of 9 months in 3 installments. The user would get free talktime of Rs. 25 every 3 months. The call charges, though affordable, could have been lower. Local calls and SMS cost Re.1 and Rs. 1.5 for STD calls and SMSes.
If Vodafone has Shaadi.com under its sleeve, Airtel has tied up with BharatMatrimony.com to offer their version of matrimonial services. Users will be able to view this service on Airtel’s Live WAP portal.
Access to the service is absolutely free. There are no charges for activating the service or browsing the portal. However, a subscription of Rs. 20 per week will be charged giving the subscriber freedom to view unlimited profiles and can access 2 contacts free of cost.
It is not difficult to find similar plans offered by both Airtel and Vodafone under different names. We recently came across ‘Vodafone Talk 249 Bumper Plan’ and ‘Airtel Jackpot 249 Plan’ which are exactly the same plans offered offered to subscribers in Delhi and NCR circle. The details are:
Monthly Rental: Rs 249
Free: 500 minutes Mobile-to-Mobile local calls
Calling charge to all other local mobile: 30p/min
Calling charge to all other local numbers: 50p/min
Local SMS: 50p/SMS
STD calling charge to Vodafone numbers: Re 1/min
STD calling charge to all other numbers: Rs 1.50/min
Another odd corporate plan from Airtel that we came across. This one is called Airtel Deal 199 Plan + 25 Package for Mumbai. The name of this plan itself is very weird; the details are:
- Monthly rental: Rs 224
- CLIP: Free
- Monthly freebies: 200 local calls to Airtel numbers; 100 local SMS’s to any mobile
- Call charge to local Airtel numbers: 15p/min
- Call charge to all other local mobile: 25p/min
- Call charge to local landline: Re 1/min
- Local and National SMS: 50p/SMS
- STD call charge to all numbers: Rs 1.50/min
We Say: We would go for a Good Value 199 Plan which is in fact better than this Corporate plan and is available to all its customers.
Bharti Airtel has tied up with smartphone maker i-mate to offer its subscribers their Windows mobile phone JAMA 101. The i-mate JAMA 101 is powered by a Samsung CPU at 300MHz with 64MB of RAM. The other details are:
- 128MB ROM – extendable by microSD
- Supports EDGE, Bluetooth
- Display – TFT touchscreen, 65k colors at 320 x 240 pixels
- 2 MP camera with Autofocus and Flash
The i-mate JAMA 101 costs Rs 12,900 and will be available all across India through i-mate and Airtel stores. Another feature is that, users will get 50MB/month of data download at Rs 99/month on Airtel.