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British MNC Vodafone’s India arm doubles 2G, 3G charges

Vodafone India has doubled its mobile Internet rates for 2G and 3G customers across the country, and it is being implemented in a phased manner.
The new rates for pay-as-you-go (PAYG) pre-paid and post paid users are 4 paisa per 10 KB, as compared to 2 paisa per 10 KB charged earlier.
The company had in November last year reduced the rates by up to 80 per cent to 2 paisa per 10 KB, from 10 paisa per 10 KB.
When contacted, a Vodafone spokesperson said: ‘Vodafone following its price change in November 2013 has revised its mobile Internet charges for Pay as Go (PAYG) users. ‘At 4p/10KB, Vodafone still offers most attractive and lowest standard mobile Internet charges in the industry for pre-paid and post-paid customers. This is applicable to both 2G as well as 3G customers.’

The spokesperson added that this change is applicable across all circles but is being rolled out in a phased manner.
The company had said in November last year that as part of its strategy to ‘democratise’ data, Vodafone was educating current and potential users about how Internet can add significant value to them.
As per FY'14, Vodafone India logged in 125 per cent year-on-year increase in data traffic. The company had 52 million data customers in the country, with 7 million of them 3G data users.

Meanwhile, Telecom major Bharti Airtel has signed a definitive agreement with Loop Mobile to acquire the latter’s operations in Mumbai. The company had in February announced that it would buy the business and assets of Loop Mobile in Mumbai under a strategic agreement.
The company, however, is yet to get the regulatory approvals for the agreement.

‘With reference to the earlier announcement dated 18 February, 2014 titled ‘Airtel and Loop Mobile announce agreement to create Mumbai’s largest mobile network’, Bharti Airtel Ltd has now informed the BSE that the Company has signed the definitive agreement with Loop Mobile (India) Limited,’ Airtel said in a filing to the BSE.

As per market estimates, the agreement is worth Rs 700 crore though the company did not disclose the size of the deal.
Under the agreement, Loop Mobile’s 3 million subscribers in Mumbai will join Airtel’s over 4 million subscribers, making it the largest network in the metropolitan city. Loop Mobile’s 2G-enabled network supported by 2,500 plus cell sites have also become part of Airtel’s network which has over 4,000 cell sites at present.
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