Vodafone Idea (Vi) has stated that it will increase prepaid tariff by up to 25%, starting November 25. The operator announced the move in an exchange filing with the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) earlier on Tuesday. With the new prices, Vi prepaid plans will now be more expensive by Rs 20 to Rs 500 per plan.
In terms of voice plans and bundles, Vodafone Idea’s Rs 79 prepaid plan will now cost Rs 99, and offer voice talktime worth Rs 99 and 1 paisa per second, along with 200MB 4G data. Prepaid voice bundles of the operator will start at Rs 179 instead of Rs 149, offering unlimited voice calls for 28 days – along with 300 SMS messages and 2GB 4G data for the period.
The revised price of its most expensive prepaid plan will be Rs 2,899 instead of Rs 2,399 – offering unlimited voice calls, 1.5GB 4G data per day and 100 SMS messages per day for 365 days. Its data top-ups will start at Rs 58 instead of Rs 48, offering 3GB data for 28 days.
“The new plans will start the process of Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) improvement and help address financial stress faced by the industry,” the operator said in the filing.
The move comes after Bharti Airtel also hiked its prepaid tariff by 20-25% on Monday. The latter stated that its move may help increase its ARPU up to Rs 200, and subsequently to Rs 300, as it chases a “reasonable return on capital” and a “financially healthy business model.”
With the two operators hiking prepaid tariffs, it now remains to be seen what Reliance Jio, the other significant telecom operator in India, does. The latter was responsible for a landslide in prepaid telecom tariff in the country, when it opened its commercial services in 2016.