5G plans should have premium prices and offer more data, says Vodafone Idea MD in a statement to the press. Here is all you need to know.
5G auctions are done and operators are reading their infrastructure to kickstart 5G networks in India. Airtel has already announced its 5G service rollout from later in August while other operators are expected to release their 5G services before the end of this year. While the promises are high, Vodafone Idea MD believes that so should be the prices! In a recent earnings call, Vodafone Idea (VIL) Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Ravinder Takkar said that 5G data plans should be priced at a premium when compared to 4G LTE plans.
Takkar says that the 5G plans should come at a premium price than ever. At the same time, these plans should also offer more data allowance than the ones available in 4G services. He also expects the tariffs of mobile phone services to rise before the year ends. The reason behind this statement is to offset the massive prices operators had to pay during the auctions.
5G plans could be pricey, says Vodafone Idea
“Given the fact that a fair amount of money has been spent on spectrum, we believe that 5G should be priced at a premium to 4G. You can price it at a premium, but of course within that premium you could have a situation where a number of gigabytes that you get are more because you are consuming potentially more, given the extra bandwidth that you get in 5G,” Takkar said.
“Just to summarise that on the 4G pricing, I think there is certainly an opportunity based on the value that has been continuously provided to the consumers and how the first few price increases have been absorbed in a seamless manner, I think there’s an opportunity to do that soon,” Takkar said.
Vodafone Idea had acquired spectrum worth Rs. 18,800 crore during the 5G auctions, which includes the 3300 MHz band in 17 circles and spectrum in the 26 GHz band in 16 circles for 5G services. The company also acquired additional 4G spectrum in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Punjab.
Does that mean Vodafone Idea could price its 5G plans higher than others? And is this an indication that overall prices of 5G services will be higher? Jio and Airtel usually compete to keep the prices competitive but there could be a premium charged in the initial days of 5G.