Broadband story in India sadly remains a saga of neglect with the government only recently waking up to the need to give the service a much needed push in the form of policy related incentives. But there are some players who are proactively working on the broadband front and are all geared up to cash in on the sector whenever the situation is ripe.
One such player, Bharti Airtel is banking big on the broadband potential and in keeping with the company’s tradition of keeping a step ahead of competition, has forged valuable partnerships over the past few months or rather years to drive the uptake of broadband services and also to enhance its end-user experience.
The company’s offering in the broadband space include some basic services as well as high end services based on latest technological concept. For instance the company offers cloud computing services as part of its Net PC offering. The PC offered under such a scheme is priced at Rs 7,999/- thereby helping the company in reaching out to a larger addressable market. The Net PC is also powered by Nivio and Microsoft. The service available in 95 cities propose to offer low cost but highly secured desktop services to subscribers. Customers are offered 5 GB of online space under the services.
It is also among the pioneers to introduce high speed internet services in India. Airtel’s 16 mbps broadband service available to enterprise particularly the SME segment as well as retail consumers runs over the company’s Carrier Ethernet Network and is available under two tariff plans priced at Rs2,999 for 20 GB of monthly data transfer and Rs 4,999 for 40 GB of data transfer. Both the plans come with a free fixedline connection. Incidentally the company had introduced 8 mbps broadband speed in India way back in October 2007.
The company has also been smart in tying up with computer terminal manufacturers. Its alliance with HP forged in September last year, offers Airtel’s broadband connection bundled with HP & Compaq notebooks as well as desktops.
Bharti Airtel was also few among private operators to offer free broadband along with fixedline connections as part of its Free Broadband Plan in 2007.
The company’s service offerings under its Broadband Business vertical include Wi-Fi, One Airtel, 16 mbps service, IPTV, Net PC and Airtel PC security.
While the company is currently keeping a low profile of its broadband initiatives, the initiatives entered into with industry players appear to be paying off for the company.
An analysis of the company’s performance in the internet and broadband space clearly reflects the progress achieved by the company as compared to competitors.
While one agrees that broadband sector is still at an infancy stage in India and the market dynamics will certainly change post introduction of wireless broadband services in the country, Bharti Airtel is expected to continue to be among the top performers in the field complimented by its position as an integrated telecom player which will help it to offer wireline as well as wireless broadband services.
Performance of Bharti Airtel in the broadband space
Performance of Bharti Airtel in Internet space