The rise of Jio- The telecom revolution in India

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Jio– the word sounds familiar and is used daily at any level no matter if you are a tech geek or just a layman….Tele-communication talks seem incomplete without Jio. The company entered the market in 2016 and within just 5 years has turned the market upside down. It has around 414.9 million subscribers. It has beaten other competitors like Bharti Airtel and VI (cartel formed by Vodafone and idea) in case of growth, funding and subscribers. Let’s dive and know the secret sauce used by Jio to reach the heights.

The birth of Jio

Isha Ambani, the daughter of Mukesh Amabani, was struggling to submit her coursework to university when she was at home in India. The network error gave rise to idea of Jio. Indians were at that time suffering from poor connectivity and a severe scarcity of the most critical digital resource data.  Jio entered as a life saver for the people whose work was digital and suffered with network problems. Jio entered as 4G network provided with free calling and internet for a long time until it started charging for the services.

What makes it unique?

Jio was the first 4G network in India. High speed and affordable internet was their goal and it’s been fulfilled in all the possible ways and now aims to launch 5G network too. Jio services were available for free for first 6 months after its launch in 2016 and even after it started selling plans they were very low compared to others. Along with all this Jio has launched several new things like Jio’s 4G smart phone- Chatur, and will soon launch Jio book (laptop). Jio saavn, Jio Mart, Jio Chat, Jio switch, Jio News, Jio Cinema, Jio TV, Jio Meet, Jio Online are various platforms provided and launched by Jio. Along with these additional benefits Jio’s low price has been a miracle for millions of Indians. Before the launch of Jio one needed to pay 499 and above to get 1GB per month but Jio revolutionalized the telecommunication industry and became the apple of eye for people. Over the past four years, Jio has got more than 400 million subscribers and became the largest mobile network on the planet. Jio was free for the first six month and the affordable service and fast speed of internet served as cherry on the cake for its development.

The cherries on the cake

  1. Ultra-cheap data: Before the entry of Jio in the tele-communication industry the plans where very expensive. People needed to pay Rs.450 for just 1GB a month. The free data given by Jio was like treat for people. Later it launched chargeable plans, consumers paid roughly Rs. 10 per GB of 4G data .
  2. Free voice calls: Voice calls became free for all consumers across different networks after Jio entered the teleocm market. The company has declared that both local and STD calls will always be free on its network, to all networks. Rivals eventually followed suit, offering prepaid and postpaid packs with bundled free minutes for STD and local voice calls to all networks. Earlier people paid for both calls and data, FREE calls and cheap data caught everyone’s attention.
  1.  Content – Another thing which makes Jio unique is the content and additional benefits. The Jio subscribers have access to apps like Jio Mart, Jio Movies, Jio Saavn, Jio TV, Jio Meet etc. People really get to enjoy all these free without having to subscribe to any premium service like Netflix, Amazon Play, Amazon Music etc. 
  1. Easy Activation – They focused on getting sim card a simpler process, e-KYC, home delivery and quick activation.
  1. Customer Retention– Being the economical service provider, Jio has retained customers by launching plans and other benefits.  Jio offers free services to its users along  with a variety of services which allow for On-demand streaming of movies, TV and music. This jaw dropping offering induced potential customers and a population starving for cheaper tariffs to switch to Jio.
  1. Referral Marketing –  Jio did not invest big money in advertising. It focused on referral marketing. Referral marketing is a strategy to encourage passionate customers and advocates to directly refer their network to business. According to a study 82% people ask for suggestions while considering the purchase.
  1. Superior Technology –  While all other network providers were busy covering up investments in older spectrums and differentiated pricing for voice and data, Jio had voLTE, with a capability of handling voice calls with the help of data. Jio killed two stones with one bird over here – investments in voice technology and tapping the latent potential of internet data over voice or SMS.

The smart Jio move

Mukesh Ambani guaranteed that, after Jio’s public launch, for the average Indian, the internet would soon cost no more than a vada pav, Mumbai, which costs about 12 rupees. The company’s portfolio increasingly includes a number of streaming services, like JioTV, JioCinemas, and JioSaavn (for music), and its e-commerce partnership with another Reliance subsidiary, India’s largest retail chain, JioMart. It has also been developing cloud services to expand its enterprise businesses, quietly making software-as-a-service (SaaS) acquisitions in 2019. But most importantly, the lowering cost of mobile data and the growth of internet users across India in just four short years has allowed Jio to build products for a digital consumer base it helped forge. If your guiding light is what the customer really wants, you cannot be wrong.” work and its strategy centered on serious customer-centricity and a web scale approach to just about everything.

What’s next ?

The market share of Reliance Jio in terms of total wireless subscribers was  35.54 per cent, Bharti Airtel at 29.83 per cent, and Vodafone Idea at 24.20 per cent, as per TRAI. It’s all set to launch another telecom revolution- The 5G Revolution. Jio is also planning to launch 5G Android smart phones with google. They are constantly working to make India 2G mukt. Besides consumer and enterprise telecommunication services, 5G will be used for radio broadcasting, aerospace and even defense. Jio, with one of its strategic investors Google, would look to roll out 100 Million low-cost 4G or possibly 5G-enabled smart phones, at a fraction of their current cost per unit, in 2021. Reliance’s online grocery store JioMart, launched earlier this year, already has limited integration with WhatsApp in place. Users can just send  ‘Hi’ to a phone number for JioMart, following which, a chat with the store’s virtual assistant would be initiated. Through this chat, one can track the status of their orders and make an item or refund-related queries. Jio Glass was launched at Reliance’s AGM this year in July. The company said that Jio Glass is designed for teachers and students to enable 3D virtual rooms and conduct holographic classes via the Jio Mixed Reality service in real-time. JioHealthHub to the video conferencing solution JioMeet, its ruling in every field.

Most importantly, all eyes will be on whether the company is able to realize its 5G ambitions in 2021. But surely it can be called wireless wonder for India.

Author: Urvi Shah is an CA Aspirant from Nagpur, Maharashtra. She is a budding writer and an avid reader. She loves to craft her imagination into words. She calls herself a painter of thoughts. She is an amateur writer and poet. With observation mode always on, she spends her time scribbling her thoughts in diary.


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