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Freebies from Reliance Jio hasten Indian mobile consolidation

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Mark Maynard
Feb 22, 2017 23:52
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India s largest operator, Bharti Airtel, is to acquire the Indian mobile business of Norwegian carrier Telenor, in an apparent move to counter the impact of disruptive pricing by new entrant Reliance Jio Infocomm.

The deal is the latest among carriers aiming to consolidate their operations in India.

Vodafone Group confirmed recently that it was in talks with Indian operator Idea Cellular for a merger, while earlier Reliance Communications entered into an agreement in September to merge its wireless business with Aircel, a smaller mobile operator.

The consolidation could help users as larger companies will be able to use spectrum more efficiently and invest in new technologies quickly, according to analysts.

A unit of the large Reliance Industries with deep pockets, Jio upset the plans of entrenched rivals by offering 4G services free for close to six months, garnering 100 million customers in the bargain.

The company, which plans to start charging from April 1, has indicated it will continue to undercut its rivals.

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Mark Maynard
Feb 22, 2017 23:52
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