Will Reliance Jio grow from a secondary option to a primary choice for calls and data?

Sami Khan
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When Reliance Jio surprised the whole nation, and partly the world, with its unlimited data and voice calling for free, users remained skeptical about switching to Jio as a primary option. Thanks to the widespread of dual SIM smartphones, users could use Jio as well as their existing SIM card side by side.

Reliance Jio was massively used for its high-speed 4G data. Initially, making calls using Jio's network was nothing less than a challenge, but the network improved significantly over the months. From what we have experience, Jio's voice calling is still from flawless as compared to other networks in India.

High-speed 4G remained Jio's strongest suit, and became its biggest USP. Jio's free data and voice calls end on March 31, post which users must choose a tariff to continue using the services. After a six-month hiatus, it's finally the moment of truth for Reliance Jio.

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To ensure that Jio users do not feel the transition from using free to paid services, the new telco introduced Jio Prime Membership. Through this membership, the telecom operator bundles the same services users enjoyed during the January-March period under a low-priced tariff.

Users must pay a one-time fee of Rs. 99 to join Jio Prime and then recharge for Rs. 303 per month to continue using Jio 4G data, voice calls, and access MyJio apps and services free for 28 days. It works out at just Rs. 10 for 1GB while calling and MyJio entertainment apps are offered as complimentary services.

Analysts remained skeptical about Jio's paid model to succeed. But the latest report by Phone Radar citing internal sources suggests that users' response towards Jio Prime has tremendous. So far, the telecom operator has crossed 50 million Prime members and aims to add another 10-15 million users by the end of this month.

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This is quite an impressive figure. Jio has more than 100 million users and regaining more than 40 percent of it for its paid services is nothing short of a remarkable achievement. What's even more interesting is that more users are flocking to join Jio Prime Membership.

As millions of users upgrade to Jio's paid network, it is a sign that users might actually be willing to trade their existing network for Jio as a primary one. But there's a matter of a big IF and WHEN it might happen. After all, Jio's offerings are the best and most cost effective compared to rivals such as Airtel, Vodafone, BSNL and Idea.

Jio users have only until March 31 to join Prime, but reports have emerged that the telecom operator might extend the prime membership enrollment by a month. There's no confirmation on the same, but it won't be surprising considering Jio's tradition of making unexpected announcements.

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So will you be ditching your other SIM cards to use Jio as a primary network? Let us know in the comments below.

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