Sunday, April 17, 2016

Reliance Communications (RCOM) to Launch 4G in India, to Shut Down CDMA by End of 2016

More than 1 year back, I posted a story that will Reliance Communications shut down its CDMA business? The reason behind earlier forcast was Jio might buy out RCom's CDMA assets incl. spectrum and all.

However after nearly 16 months, now the situation is like this: 

  1. Jio has 800 MHz spectrum in 10 circles.
  2. Jio and RCom will share 800MHz band
  3. RCom will merge with MTS - more 800MHz spectrum for LTE deployment by RCom as well as Jio as both share the spectrum.
  4. RCom will merge with Aircel - RCom will have 10MHz 3G spectrum in several circles, as well as RCom will have more spectrum on 1800MHz band in all circles, which will eventually used for 4G.
In April this year DoT has approved 800MHz spectrum sharing between Jio and RCom (+ RTL) in 9 circles - Mumbai, Uttar Pradesh (East), Madhya Pradesh, Bihar, Orrisa, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Assam and North East.


While merging with MTS India will give Rcom more spectrum on 800MHz band, and that will be sufficient for RCom to roll out LTE800. So in the mean while, RCOM starts 4G on 800MHz trials and keeps its CDMA users informed about its own upcoming 4G launch and will migrate its approx 5 million CDMA customers to 4G in due time (probably started from May, date is yet to be fixed). 


RCOM is sending text messages to its CDMA customers regarding its 4G launch. The texts are like this:

RM-615125:- Dear Customer, shortly we will upgrade to 4G network. Please migrate to Reliance GSM through INP. Visit nearest retailer or FOFO and avail exciting GSM offers. RCOM.

On my Reliance CDMA Kolkata no, I received this message: 





Now there are confusions among Reliance CDMA users, incl. data cards users. Will Reliance shut down its whole CDMA business, in all circles or in selected ones and migrate all customers to LTE/4G? It's yet to be clear.

However from today I could not able to use my R-CDMA no to call anybody. Even text messages are not delivered or received !! So I could not able to register for 4G by calling 1299.





Rcom 4G smartphones: http://shop.rcom.co.in/15-4g-smartphones - the link lists HTC 828, TCL Pride T500L, LYF Flame 1.


More handset options: https://paytm.com/offer/rcom-4g/




Rcom partnered with PayTM for LTE enabled smartphone sale. PayTM lists the following handsets as of now:

​Apple iPhone 5S
Asus Zenfone Max
Samsung Galaxy J7
HTC 828 Grey
Lenovo A600 Black
Yu Yuphoria Buffed Steel
Asus Zenphone Laser 2
Intex Aqua Super
HTC 626


Now over shop.rcom.co.in a 4G MiFi device was spotted. Once it was revealed, Rcom kept the shopping portal offline, may be returning the portal with a new look including all 4G related staffs.

Update: The shopping portal has been live since April 28th with some issues from time to time.


Reliance Hello FWP Services

http://shop.rcom.co.in/fixed-wireless-phones/60-gsm-fwp.html


For CDMA FWP - Reliance Hello customers RCom has introduced GSM FWP @ Rs 1899.


Reliance Netconnect/Netconnect+ or Wipod users:


Rcom has launched the 4G MiFi device - WD670 for Rs 2699 (with 16% off on MRP Rs 3199).



Just plug your CDMA dongle into USB port and click on Upgrade to 4G tab on the customer loading page and follow to customers.

The device will be shipped by June 30th, 2016

Features:
  • SoC - Qualcomm MDM9307
  • Battery 2300mAh with 5-6 hrs working hours
  • upto 32 GB TF card support
  • upto 31 WiFi connections supported.
  • upto 150Mbps downlink with LTE FDD 800/1800 and LTE-TDD 2300 MHz band supported
Source: http://shop.rcom.co.in/17-wipods

More info on : http://www.reliancenetconnect.co.in/


However as one R-CDMA customer shared, you may get 72% discount on 4G MiFi devices. 



FAQ to Reliance Communications' 4G services:




1. I am a R-GSM subscriber. Can I get Reliance 4G Smart SIM ?

No. You can't, at least now.

2. I am a R-CDMA mobile user. Can I get Reliance 4G Smart SIM ?

Yes, and you must upgrade your CDMA RUIM card to Reliance 4G Smart SIM to continue using your Reliance connection.

3. How long I can live with the old RUIM enabled connection? I mean I would like to know How RCOM will shut down CDMA ?

No one really knows. 4G upgradation is going on, and you often find the voice and data is not working. CDMA will be phased out slowly by end of 2016.





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