Mukesh Ambani announces Reliance JioGigaFiber broadband services
Reliance JioGigaFiber, fixed line fiber-based broadband services, will be rolled out across 1,100 cities of India gradually this year as registrations will begin from 15 August
Mumbai: After creating a storm with its cheap mobile internet services, Reliance Jio today unveiled its fiber-based fixed line broadband services which will offer internet services at 1Gbps speed. At its annual general meeting (AGM), Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL) chairman Mukesh Ambani announced the launch of JioGigaFiber service. “We will now extend fiber connectivity to homes, merchants, small and medium enterprises and large enterprises simultaneously across 1,100 cities to offer the most advanced fiber-based broadband connectivity solutions,” Mukesh Ambani said at RIL AGM.
When will Reliance Jio GigaFiber be available
Currently, Reliance Jio is running beta trials of Jio GigaFiber in tens of thousands of homes.
Starting this Independence Day, 15 August, you can start registering your interest for JioGigaFiber through both MyJio app and Jio.com. This data will be used to prioritise the rollout of JioGigaFiber, which aims to be the largest greenfield fixed-line broadband rollout anywhere in the world.
There was no announcement on the price of Jio GigaFiber but it is being speculated in the market that the pricing plans will be disruptive just like what Reliance Jio did to mobile internet rates. Industry body Cellular Operators Association of India (COAI) director general Rajan Mathews said he expects Reliance Jio broadband to make some disruption and drive down prices in the market.
Mukesh Ambani said JioGigaFiber will enable households access ultra high-definition entertainment on large screen TVs, multi-party video conferencing from living room, voice-activated virtual assistants, virtual reality gaming, digital shopping and immersive experiences.
For merchants and small businesses, fixed-line broadband JioGigaFiber will empower small owner-driven business to compete on level terms with larger businesses, Ambani said. For large enterprises, fixed-line broadband will provide them the ability to compete in the global marketplace, using digital tools and techniques that are powering the Fourth Industrial Revolution, he added.
Read highlights of Mukesh Ambani’s speech at RIL AGM here.
Reliance Jio is targeting 5 crore JioGigaFiber home customers and 3 crore small merchants and shop-keepers.
Pointing out that India lags behind significantly in the fixed line broadband market because of poor infrastructure, Ambani said India ranks 134th globally in the segment.
Mukesh Ambani predicted that optical fixed line broadband is the future and is confident that Reliance Jio will take India to the top 5 in fixed line broadband services globally in the coming years.
Will Reliance JioGigaFiber disrupt India’s fixed-line broadband market?
“Looking at the experience of Jio 4G launch and its impact on the telecom sector, the street is extrapolating the impact of today’s launch on cable/broadband companies,” said Amit Kumar, a Mumbai-based media and consumer goods analyst at Investec Ltd told Bloomberg. “However, there are no details on pricing of TV+broadband and thus, it is difficult to take a call on potential impact.”
Shares of Hathway Cable & Datacom Ltd. fell as much as 18%, Siti Networks Ltd declined by 6.6%, and Den Networks Ltd 15.3%.
With 4G, the difficulty was setting up the nationwide telecom back-end while with broadband services, the front-end—including laying fiber to homes—will require effort, Kumar said. The company has been running trials in the nation’s financial capital Mumbai for the past two to three years, though their services are still not fully available across the city, he said.
“To what extent they will be available in these 1,100 cities, that remains to be seen,” Kumar said.
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