The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India's order to Reliance Jio to end its Jio Summer Surprise did not sit too well consumers, but the delay in discontinuing the offer has irked the incumbents. Vodafone, for one, has raised its voice against Jio's Summer Surprise offer and sought TRAI's "immediate intervention."
Vodafone alleged Jio of continuing to lure customers by giving them access to the "Summer Surprise" offer despite the telecom regulator's order to withdraw it immediately.
"In our view, such promotion... on an offer held as non-compliant is a blatant violation and disregard of TRAI's advisory," Vodafone said in a letter sent to TRAI. "Such promotions to customers makes the regulatory advisory meaningless."
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In the letter, the telecom operator also notified TRAI of the SMSes that Jio has been sending to its customers to quickly recharge to avail the benefits of the scheme. Vodafone has requested TRAI to issue an immediate ordinance so Jio can withdraw its offer and communicate the same to its users.
"Considering above, we request for TRAI's immediate intervention and issuance of suitable directions to Reliance Jio for withdrawing the said offer on immediate basis and notifying the consumers about withdrawal of said offer from the date of advisory received from TRAI," the letter said.
TRAI's order against Jio's "Summer Surprise" and extension on enrolling for Jio Prime was released on April 6 due to non-compliance with the norms. In response to the order, Jio said it will withdraw the "Summer Surprise" offer as soon as it is operationally feasible.
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While there was no resistance from Jio on TRAI's latest order, delay in executing the same has caused unrest among the telcos. International Business Times, India, reached out to Reliance Jio for a comment on the matter.
"We are pained to note such continued and deliberate attempts by competitors to create unnecessary confusion in the market," Reliance Jio spokesperson said.
"Please refer to our press release of 6th April 2017, wherein we made it clear that Jio Summer Surprise will be withdrawn as soon as it is operationally feasible, in compliance with the regulator's advice. All the customers who have subscribed to Jio Summer Surprise offer prior to its discontinuation will remain eligible for the offer," the spokesperson added.
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Jio customers who have enrolled for Jio Prime and Jio Summer Surprise get complimentary access to Jio 4G data, voice calls, SMS, national roaming and access to MyJio apps for 3 more months. Jio has more than 100 million users, and 72 million users have already subscribed to Prime as of March 31. The offer is a major USP for Jio to convert customers from free to paid services on the network. It is evident why other telcos find it disturbing.