- Airtel and Vodafone have rejected concerns by TRAI over platinum plans.
- Airtel and Vodafone have argued that these plans were in the market well before their launch.
- The TRAI in its latest application has asked for a correction from TDSAT stating that it had started an enquiry on July 6 and not after Jio’s letter.
Airtel and Vodafone have rejected concerns by the Telecom Regulator Authority of India (TRAI) over platinum plans.
In the ongoing tussle between TRAI and private telcos Airtel and Vodafone, the latter have said that their premium plans have not downgraded the network quality for general users nor have they violated any norms.
The TRAI had blocked the REDX plans and the Platinum plans offered by Vodafone and Airtel respectively. In separate letters TRAI sought answers over priority customers and if it would mean downgrading the network quality for general users. The premium plans claim that they give priority 4G network to the customers who opt to pay more for these premium plans namely REDX and Platinum plans.
As reported by ET telecom, Airtel stated that offering priority service to just 1-1.5 per cent of the subscriber base which provides less than 10 per cent of the revenue would not affect the service of 98 per cent customers who contribute to nearly 90 per cent of the revenue.
Vodafone also defended its REDX plan stating that 1.27 lakh subscribers of the REDX plan do not even make 0.1 per cent of the telco's total 4G user base.
Airtel further said that it tested its platinum plans for eight months before piloting the project. Airtel also stated that the implementation of faster internet speeds will determine the evolution of 5G in the market. In a letter to TRAI, Vodafone said that the REDX plan is "fully compliant to all applicable tariff orders and regulations and that TRAI has prejudged and prematurely concluded poor network service." Vodafone too had stated that the plan was in the market for around eight months.
Previously, Vodafone alleged that Trai has imputed bias and said the regulator barred Vodafone from signing up new customers for REDX plan only to help the cause of Reliance Jio, a report by Mint stated.
Reliance Jio had called the premium plans discriminatory and moved TRAI.
TRAI in its latest application has asked for a correction that it had started enquiry on July 6 and not after Jio's letter. The tribunal has allowed TRAI to file its reply after Vodafone replies to the latest application by TRAI by 4th August, as per ET Telecom.
TRAI had blocked the premium plans after which Vodafone moved the Telecom Dispute Appellate Tribunal (TDSAT). The TDSAT then allowed the telcos to run their plans and said while it is justified for TRAI to review the plans, blocking them was not necessary.