Reliance Industries Limited Chairman and Managing Director Mukesh Ambani has announced the launch of a new Jio Prime program, under which the operator is offering a slew of attractive deals and data benefits. While the initial 100 million subscribers are already eligible for the program, new customers can enroll between March 1 and March 31. To enroll, users need to download the My Jio app or visit jio.com website or simply walk into a Jio store.
The Jio Prime service is available for an annual fee of Rs 99, which will let users continue to enjoy unlimited benefits offered under the Happy New Year Offer until another 12 months. To continue reaping the benefits of these freebies for another year, users will need to pay Rs 303 per month, which comes down to nearly Rs 10 per day.
So in essence, Jio customers will continue to get 1GB of 4G data free daily along with free voice calls to any network in India. Also, Jio Prime members get free access to Jio’s full bouquet of apps like JioPlay, JioOnDemand, JioBeats, JioMags, JioXpressNews and JioDrive till 2018. Ambani further said that the Jio Prime members will be eligible for several new offers from the operator and partner companies. The Jio Prime program comes into effect on April 1, 2017.
Reliance Jio’s new membership program comes as the company’s free Happy New Year Offer expires on March 31. Extension of the free offers is certainly going to raise some eyebrows, especially among rival telecom operators who have been highly critical of Jio’s free offers.
“Jio’s ecosystem has been able to gain huge user base of 100 million within a short period of 170 days. The strategy of prime membership will help Jio to lock their existing user within a short window of one month. Network reliability is a major pain point for existing Jio users, and with plans to expand base station in attempt to reach 99 percent population is a good sign. Competitors like Bharti Airtel had good reputation in this regards. It is more likely that Bharti Airtel will come up with more aggressive plans, not only for mobile data but also for broadband services to contain its users base. In long run, competitive strategy should be based on service reliability, along with value for money proposition. Operator with cheapest plan will not be the winner,” says Pavel Naiya, analyst at Counterpoint.
Besides the Jio Prime Membership program, Mukesh Ambani also announced that Jio has gone past 100 million subscribers in India in just 170 days of commercial launch. According to Ambani, the telecom operator added about seven customers every second on average.