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AirTel rolls out bundled plan for Rs 5715

May 30, 2003 13:12 IST

AirTel on Thursday announced the national launch of its bundled handset and connection offer at a gross cost of Rs 5,715 and net cost to consumer of Rs 3,315.

Customers will have to make a first-time payment of Rs 5,715 for a Nokia 3315. The package included a free talktime per month of Rs 100 for 24 months. The service provider has hence calculated the effective cost at Rs 3,315.

Manoj Kohli, president, mobility leaders, Bharti Tele-Ventures, said the new initiatives were part of the company's affordability drive by bringing down tariffs and making mobile a way of life.

Kohli said since incoming calls were free, outgoing traffic has increased. "The new usage from the new package will be profitable as outgoing will increases," Kohli said.

The bundled offer came weeks after the launch of the AirTel 0-1-2 rate offer. While the Delhi circle was at the 1 million connection level, net additions of subscribers had shot up to very high levels, said Kolhi.

The figures may go as high as 70,000 connections a week, he indicated. AirTel today slashed the rates of SMS and mobile to mobile STD rates for a monthly charge.

The service provider has slashed mobile-to-mobile STD rates to 50 paise a minute for its post-paid customers on AirTel Total Freedom 599, 999 and 1699 plans.

However, the reduced rates come with riders -- subscribers will have to pay a monthly charge of Rs 50, which would entitle them to 100 minutes at 50 paise. After 100 minutes the subscriber would have to pay the normal rates.

Further, AirTel announced new SMS rates of 60 paise for its customers wherein by paying Rs 49 per month post-paid customers can get 80 free messages.

All SMS beyond this would be chargeable at 60 paise. Pre-paid customers need to pay Rs 25 per month to avail the benefit of SMS at 60 paise.

However, it is understood that the company would review SMS rates to international destinations shortly, which at present is being charges the same as local and national rates.

Deepak Gulati, chief executive officer Bharti Mobitel said, outgoing traffic in Kolkata had increased by 10 per cent since May 1.

To invest Rs 75 crore in Kolkata circle

AirTel will invest an additional Rs 75 crore in Kolkata for network expansion, taking the total investment in the circle to Rs 550 crore (Rs 5.5 bilion).

With this investment the total number of cell sites would go up to 275 in next six months and the switch capacity to 1 million busy hour call attempt.

Deepak Gulati, chief executive officer Bharti Mobitel said, at present, there are 220 cell sites in Kolkata.

The investment was part of the Rs 1,200 crore (Rs 12 billion) expansion project announced by AirTel for its circles across the country.

BS Bureau in Kolkata