RJio unprepared before launch: Airtel

| | Updated on: Sep 27, 2016

The country’s largest telecom operator Bharti Airtel on Tuesday has blamed the new entrant Reliance Jio Infocomm (Jio) stating that the latter’s complaints of call failures or connectivity issues are due to ‘unpreparedness’ before the commercial launch.

“While RJio has continued to allege huge call failure on account of insufficient number of points of interconnection (POIs), however, we believe that the prime reason for such call failures was on account of acquisition of a large number of subscribers by RJio even before the declaration of the commercial launch,” Ravi P Gandhi, Chief Regulatory Officer, Airtel said in a letter to RJio.

Airtel has blamed the augmentation process that took much longer than required and even till date the complete POIs have not been augmented due to unpreparedness of Jio’s teams.

“These issues are still a challenge in many of your circles and continue to impede the augmentation process,” the letter sent to RJio on Monday said.

It said that the augmentation of POI’s based on actual traffic is an ongoing process, but it necessitate a reciprocal action too, from the other party. Therefore, the utilisation of POIs will only reduce as and when the E1’s (interconnect ports) are made operational and live.

The letter accessed by BusinessLine also said that despite the prompt and colossal effort on its part, as on date, only 2,484 E1s are live out of a total capacity of 3,048 provided, primarily due to various reasons for delay attributable solely to RJio’s under preparedness and insufficient testing teams/efforts.

With the current level of augmentation, the POI utilisation has come down to a 73 per cent ‘which substantiates that the astronomical demand of E1s by RJio was incorrect’ it said.

“Further, the provisioning based on calculations made by us, we could bring POIs utilisation to as low as 73 per cent which will further get reduced to 63 per cent on national basis, once the balance E1s are also commissioned,” Gandhi said. Currently, 89 per cent of traffic originating from RJio network is being terminated into Airtel network and is thereby creating asymmetry in traffic.

“This is a serious concern for us due to the below cost termination charge regime, every extra minute terminated by RJio in our network, is causing a huge financial loss to Airtel,” Gandhi added in the letter.

Jio, which launched its commercial services on September 5, has been accusing the existing service providers like Airtel, Vodafone and Idea of providing less than adequate POIs, to which others have been coming out with reasons every now and then.

Meanwhile, Telecom Regulatory Authority of India had also asked the operators to submit their network congestion details from September 15-19, to examine the congestion issue last week, and had decided on Monday to issue showcause notices on erring operators for call drops far exceeding the norm.

Published on January 16, 2018

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