Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Saturday, Sep 04, 2004
Marketing - New Products & Services
Info-Tech - Telecommunications
Tata Indicom enters wireless pre-paid space with new features
Mr S. Ramakrishnan (right), Managing Director, Tata Teleservices, and Mr Amit Bose, President, at the launch of Tata Indicom's prepaid service in Mumbai.
Mumbai , Sept. 3
TATA Indicom on Friday made an entry into the wireless prepaid space, with a service that is based on a one-second pulse, offers 100 per cent talk-time and for the first time in the country a flat tariff for both local and STD calls at 5 paise per second.
It is largely believed that the recent prepaid tariff war that started off with Reliance Infocomm's prepaid offer of 90 paise per minute (Reliance IndiaMobile(RIM)-to-RIM) was in anticipation of Tata Indicom's entry, and as an attempt to pre-empt any new promotional benefits that it may offer.
"There is no other operator who offers all three of our distinctive features together," said Mr Amit Bose, President, Tata Teleservices (TTSL), of Tata Indicom's prepaid service, at the launch conference in Mumbai here on Wednesday. "These are not promotional benefits, they constitute our main offer," he said.
However, though there is no promotional tariff offer, there is a bomb of a free offer, of one lakh free seconds (1,666 minutes approximately), 2,000 free SMSs per user, and free download of ring-tones, games, and wallpapers, (depending on the handsets bought) until November 14, 2004.
A tax is payable on the prepaid voucher which carries 100 per cent talktime, on account of the company not imposing administrative charges or plan fees.
Tata Indicom's service, called `100 % Sacchai True Paid,' will be aided by the simultaneous launch of two T-SIM-enabled CDMA handsets as well as four non T-SIM ones. "This will enable our users to be handset independent if they choose to, and to retain their SIM cards whenever they change handsets," said Mr Bose.
A black and white handset also comes with a Rs 50 Tata Indicom calling card and a colour handset with a calling card of Rs 100.
Our brand philosophy is explained in `True Paid,' said Mr Bose. "There are no multiple tariffs to confuse the user, no fine print, no asterisks," he added.
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