Preparations are in full swing at Reliance for the launch its hugely anticipated 4G mobile and digital services in the country, in the second half of this year. And according to Chairman Mukesh Ambani, the company has invested a massive $22.5 billion( approx more than₹150000 crores) for the development of Jio, much more than the initial $14 Billion estimated by the company.
Speaking in his keynote address to Ficci Frames conference on the media and entertainment industry, Mukesh Ambani said,
Jio is one of the largest transformational digital initiatives anywhere in the world with an initial investment of more than 150,000 crores. It really is the world’s biggest start-up.
He further said that Jio would help India in becoming one of the top ten mobile Internet access (markets) in the world in the next few years. At present, India stands at 150th position out of 230 countries in the world.
Ambani also laid down a four point plan to achieve that feat- coverage, quality, data and affordability of high speed mobile internet access. And Jio has some big plans as well as the potential to deliver on these agendas.
For starters, Jio aims to cover about 70% of the Indian population from day 1 itself eventually reaching 90% by the end of 2017. For comparison, we have merely 15-20%.coverage of high speed mobile internet in India at present as opposed to 75% in the US.
Next comes the quality of such network lest it should suffer the same fate as 3G in the country. Jio claims to offer 40-80 times of current mobile internet speed through its network and it is already demonstrating such high speeds through its 4G WiFi spots at cricket stadiums during the ongoing World T20 cricket tournament in India.
And it has been a proven experience of many people that as the speed of their internet goes up, so does the consumption. So it is essential to have the quantity and capacity of data to support that consumption.
On an average, an Indian consumes about 0.15 GB per annum. And Jio’s network is engineered to provide a capacity of over 10 GB per user which is almost 100 times more than the current usage.
A big hurdle in the way of plans to make India digitally active is to deal with the affordability factor for such high speed internet plans in the country.
Fourth is to make this very, very affordable.All of this is of no use is we cannot make this accessible and affordable to consumers in all parts of the country. Jio will significantly up the quantity, quality and coverage not by a factor of one or two, but as I explained technology allows us to improve this by a factor (of) 80-100,
He further explained the role of Jio in Digital India which will be more than that of just a telecom network offering high speed internet.
Jio — as often pegged by Reliance — is an entire ecosystem consisting of devices, broadband, powerful applications and services distributed to every doorstep in India that would allow Indians to live the digital life to the fullest.
Ambani also spoke about the major future trends of Digital India which include a shift from voice to video and the emergence of a unified digital telemedia world which will integrate the separate industries of telecommunications, media and entertainment, TV and broadcasting.
As mobile broadband is engulfing the world, telecom and ICT and various media sectors are converging. We are all part of a telemedia future, the rules of the game have changed. The model will shift from ownership to digital access,