Airtel launches 4G services in Agartala

Following a compelling response in Shillong – blazing Airtel 4G speeds are now available for customers in Agartala

· Superfast 4G speeds now available at same price as 3G
· Customers can enjoy 4G with immediate SIM swap and home delivery of SIMs in four hours
· Airtel continues to strike alliances with top eCommerce companies and device manufacturers to drive the 4G ecosystem in India
· Customers can opt from recently launched 4G plans – ‘Infinity Plans’ that offer unlimited voice calls on mobile, along with bundled movies and music

Bharti Airtel Limited (“Airtel”), the third largest mobile services provider globally with operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa, today announced the commercial launch of its high speed 4G services (also called LTE) in Agartala (Tripura). Now, customers across the country can experience high speed wireless broadband on Airtel 4G and get on to the digital superhighway to enjoy uninterrupted HD video streaming, superfast uploading and downloading of movies, music and images. Airtel 4G is available to customers across a range of smart devices including mobile phones, dongles, 4G hotspots and Wi-Fi dongles.

Commenting on the launch of Airtel 4G in the city, Saurabh Goel, CEO – Assam and North East, Bharti Airtel said, “As customers in India show an increasing propensity for consuming data services, we at Airtel are excited to take the lead in introducing the market to the power of blazing 4G speeds. Today, as we launch Airtel 4G for our customers in Agartala, they will be uniquely positioned for a superlative 4G experience.”

Airtel has led the 4G story in India, having launched India’s first 4G network in Kolkata in April 2012. On 6th August 2015, Airtel announced that its 4G services were available in 296 towns across India. Prior to that, Airtel had successfully conducted trials of its 4G services in select cities and leveraged feedback from customers towards strengthening its service experience.

Customers can enjoy Airtel’s recently launched carrier agnostic mobile app – ‘Wynk Movies’ – a first of its kind movie mall that will offer a specially curated library of thousands of movies and other popular videos.

Additionally, customers can leverage a host of strategic initiatives announced by Airtel as part of its national 4G rollout.

Unmatched value
· 4G at 3G prices: Airtel customers can enjoy 4G at 3G data prices with packs starting at INR 25. In addition, with every 4G SIM swap, Airtel is offering six months of unlimited music streaming and downloads on ‘Wynk Music’ and five free movies per month for six months on the Eros Now channel of ‘Wynk Movies’.

· ‘Infinity Plans’: Airtel has introduced a new range of ‘Infinity Plans’ starting Rs.999. These high-end plans offer unlimited voice calls on mobile (first time in India) along with data benefits and access to ‘Wynk Movies’ and ‘Wynk Music’.

Seamless customer experience
· Instant SIM swap in minutes

· Home delivery of SIMs and postpaid connections in four hours

· Flexpage: This breakthrough technology is an automated platform that allows customers to track their data usage and get real time usage alerts. With Flexpage, customers can also upgrade their mobile plan on the go, as and when they exhaust their monthly data quota.

Innovative alliances and faster customer acquisition
· Alliance with Flipkart: Numerous 4G devices on Flipkart are now bundled and delivered with Airtel 4G SIMs. Customers can choose from a range of 4G devices (from brands like Samsung, Xiaomi, Motorola, Lenovo, Asus and Huawei) and enjoy a host of attractive Airtel 4G data benefits.

· Alliance with Samsung: Samsung stores will educate customers on Airtel 4G: Samsung retail stores now facilitate seamless Airtel 4G SIM swaps. Samsung also offers exciting Airtel 4G data benefits on its select 4G devices.

Mega Airtel 4G brand campaign
· Aimed at driving the commercial launch of its 4G services, Airtel also has launched an all new brand campaign. The TVC invites mobile users across India to experience blazing Airtel 4G speeds and opens the ‘Airtel Challenge’ to demonstrate the superior internet experience that Airtel’s smartphone network delivers for its customers.

To get started on Airtel 4G, customers can walk into their nearest Airtel Store and switch to a 4G SIM. For more information, visit www.airtel.in/4g.

Celltick and Airtel Lanka Partner for Home Screen based Mobile Initiated Commerce

Partnership provides location-based enhanced services to Airtel Lanka customers

Celltick, a global leader in mobile initiated commerce announced its partnership with Airtel Lanka, a subsidiary of Bharti Airtel, a leading global telecommunications company with operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa. With this partnership, Celltick will provide a fully managed high-value interactive service on the home screen for Airtel Lanka’s 1.7 million subscribers based on its patented LiveScreen platform.

Celltick’s managed service delivers location-based information and provides ease of access to relevant content, service discovery and mobile coupons for physical goods that can be redeemed in store. Airtel Now! enables the consumer to discover and avail various value added services directly on their home screen. Airtel subscribers can now enjoy services like Tips, Trivia, Factoids, Quizzes, Contests and more with the convenience of a click. Leveraging its unique capability to segment, it targets millions of mobile subscribers based on location and user behavior.

“We are happy to partner with Celltick and introduce a mass market service that delivers content and services to the mobile home screen of our consumers using a simple interactive medium” said Airtel Lanka CEO/MD Suren Goonewardene. “The partnership enables us to realize our vision of delivering innovative services that provide personalized content and information to our subscribers”.

“We are excited to expand our partnership with Airtel Lanka and support them in delivering high value services to their users”, said Celltick India Managing Director Abraham Punnoose. “Our experience in providing successful mobile marketing services that deliver value to consumers will enable us to further enhance the experience of Airtel Lanka’s subscribers.”

Earlier this year, the two companies have partnered to launch Start, Celltick’s next generation intelligent Android interface across Airtel consumers in Sri Lanka. Celltick powers billions of mobile-initiated commerce transactions for virtual and physical goods serving more than 150 million active consumers across 25 countries.

Bharti Airtel, Idea and Vodafone forbidden from adding new 3G customers in roaming circles

Bharti Airtel, Idea and Vodafone forbidden from adding new 3G customers in roaming circles

Supreme Court has ruled that Airtel, Vodafone and Idea cannot accept new 3G subscribers in circles where they are offering services through roaming agreements.

Indian government claims that these agreements are illegal as these companies are not allowed to offer 3G services outside the circles where they have acquired the rights for.

These companies have signed on deals with each other to offer 3G services to their customers on roaming.

Supreme Court would give its judgment next month. Until then, these companies can continue to offer 3G services to existing subscribers.

Airtel has been offering 3G services in seven different circles through these agreements.

Bharti Airtel and Opera Software launch India’s first ‘Opera Web Pass’ for customers

Offering a range of affordable and simple pay-as-you-go services for mobile internet users

‘Opera Web Pass’ advantages for Airtel mobile customers
Get instant access to the internet subscription that suits your needs.
Enjoy simple time- and content-based charging.
Time-based or content-based packages are easy to understand and provide the right level of cost control.
Stay informed by a pop-up when Opera Web Pass has expired or if you are about to access services subject to additional charges.

Today, Bharti Airtel, a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa, and Opera Software announced the launch of Opera Web Pass for customers in India. With Opera Web Pass, first-time mobile internet users in the country are now able to subscribe to affordable and simple pay-as-you-go services for their Airtel mobile phones. A subscriber just needs to start Opera Mini on his mobile phone, click Opera Web Pass in the Speed Dial start page and choose from a list of web pass subscriptions, allowing Airtel mobile customers to purchase from a range of user-centric packages to suit their internet access needs. Examples are as follows:
Purchase an hourly data plan, by paying a fee for one-hour subscription of mobile internet.
Stay online throughout the day with unlimited data usage, by paying a flat fee for a 24-hour subscription.
Choose to browse the web just on weekends, with the weekend subscription pack.

For mobile subscribers without data plans, this is the easiest and most flexible solution for accessing the web. With the opportunity for users to choose an exact time period in which to access the web, rather than the amount of megabytes, Airtel’s browsing offer will now be more tangible and easy to understand.

“Access to the web is a universal right. Partnering with market leaders such as Airtel has offered us the opportunity to help lower the barriers to access the mobile web and empower more Indian users to get online,” says Lars Boilesen, CEO, Opera Software.

“For millions of users, their mobile phones have the potential to become the first device through which they will experience the web. We want to simplify the steps leading to web browsing for these first-time users. Opera Web Pass allows us to give users access to the mobile internet when and where they want it,” added N Rajaram, Chief Marketing Officer for Consumer Business, Bharti Airtel. This alliance between Airtel and Opera Software is the first of its kind in India, available exclusively for Airtel mobile customers.

Opera Web Pass leverages the existing capabilities of the Opera Mini platform, which means almost any phone on any platform can be made web friendly. To learn more about the Opera Web Pass, visit http://www.opera.com/webpass/.

For more information on Opera Web Pass on Airtel, please visit www.airtel.in

Bharti airtel is now the fourth largest mobile operator in the world

Bharti airtel is now the fourth largest mobile operator in the world

Market analyst firm Wireless Intelligence has reported that airtel has now become the world’s fourth largest mobile operator with around 250 million customers. They have overtaken Telefonica Group to take the fourth spot.

China Mobile of course leads the charts with more than 680 million subscribers. Vodafone is at the second spot with 386 million customers.

Airtel could soon overtake America Movil Group which currently has around 251.8 million subscribers.

Reliance, Idea and BSNL are also in the top twenty places globally. Reliance is at eighth spot, Idea is at fourteenth while BSNL is losing out to other companies in twentieth spot.

GSMA Launches Data Roaming Transparency Initiative

New Measures Aim to Help Consumers Better Understand and Manage Data Usage, Addressing Head-On the Issue of Bill Shock

At the Mobile Asia Expo, the GSMA announced that it has launched an initiative that will provide consumers greater visibility of their roaming charges and usage of mobile data services when travelling abroad. At a meeting held this week in Shanghai, 24 operator groups, including América Móvil, AT&T, Axiata Group Berhad, Bharti Airtel, Ltd., China Mobile, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, France Telecom-Orange, Hutchison 3 Group, KT Corporation, MTS, Qtel, SK Telecom, Smart Communications, Inc., SoftBank Mobile Corp., Tata Teleservices Limited, Telecom Italia Group, Telefónica, Telekom Austria Group, Telenor Group, TeliaSonera, Verizon Communications, VimpelCom and Vodafone Group agreed to undertake a number of measures which will help mobile subscribers better understand their data roaming charges and more effectively manage their use of data services.

“A number of our operator members are already implementing sound transparency practices, benefitting more than a billion subscribers worldwide,” said Franco Bernabè, Chairman of the GSMA and Chairman and CEO of Telecom Italia Group. “The initiative announced today will help to promote an even broader adoption of principles that will offer a more transparent and uniform experience for billions of consumers, wherever they travel.”

The GSMA is committed to working with mobile operators worldwide to adopt the following measures:
Sending text messages to remind customers of their data roaming tariffs when they arrive in another country and turn on their mobile device;
Implementing a monthly data roaming spending limit to help consumers manage their roaming bill and sending alerts when their data usage approaches the limit; and
Temporarily suspending data service when usage exceeds the spending limit.

In the first phase of this initiative, these operators and their group subsidiaries have agreed to implement these data roaming transparency measures by the end of 2012, covering more than 4 billion mobile connections worldwide. The GSMA will also work to promote the adoption of these guidelines across its full membership base of nearly 800 mobile operators globally. Further, the GSMA will develop a trust mark that will identify to consumers that their mobile operator is implementing these measures.

-ENDS-

About the GSMA
The GSMA represents the interests of mobile operators worldwide. Spanning more than 220 countries, the GSMA unites nearly 800 of the world’s mobile operators, as well as more than 200 companies in the broader mobile ecosystem, including handset makers, software companies, equipment providers, Internet companies, and media and entertainment organisations. The GSMA also produces industry-leading events such as the Mobile World Congress and Mobile Asia Expo.

For more information, please visit the GSMA corporate website at www.gsma.com or Mobile World Live, the online portal for the mobile communications industry, at www.mobileworldlive.com.

Media Contacts:
Xiong Wen (Beijing): +86 10 8569 9918
wxiong@webershandwick.com or press@mobileasiaexpo.com

Jerry Zhang (Shanghai): +86 21 2411 0003
jzhang2@webershandwick.com or press@mobileasiaexpo.com

Abigail Faylor (London): +44 (0)2070 670 851
afaylor@webershandwick.com or press@mobileasiaexpo.com

GSMA Press Office
press@gsm.org

Airtel inks global deal with Opera

To offer co-branded Opera Mini browsers to its customers across 17 countries in Africa

Bharti Airtel, a leading integrated telecommunications company with operations in 20 countries across Asia and Africa, today announced that it has signed a global arrangement with Opera Software to offer a customized and co-branded version of the Opera Mini internet browser for Airtel mobile customers across its operations. With this, over 253 million Airtel customers across countries including India, South Asia and Africa will now be able to leverage Opera Mini’s unique proxy-server-based technology to compress data by up to 90% and decrease their data transfer costs.

Designed for speed and ease of use, Opera Mini provides remarkably fast browsing on nearly any mobile phone. It is proven to make browsing up to nine times as fast as client-only mobile browsers on both 2/2.5G and 3/3.75G networks. With its small footprint and high level of usability, Opera Mini provides a consistent user experience across a broad range of handsets.

“In today’s African markets, data services are quickly becoming as important to our customers as voice services. This is why Airtel is committed to providing consumers with the most innovative and efficient products and services, which will have a positive impact on their experience. . By leveraging Opera’s tried-and-tested set of solutions that lead to consistent and full-web user experience, we are excited to provide a superior browsing platform to Airtel mobile customers in 17 countries of our operations in Africa. We are confident that this association will be instrumental in helping us deliver a truly customized, enhanced and optimized browsing experience for our data users,” said Andre Beyers, Chief Marketing Officer, Airtel Africa.

“Our primary drive is to provide the best user experience, no matter what device people use. There are millions of users with basic mobile phones instead of smartphones, and Opera Mini gives even the most basic phone a smartphone-like web experience,” said Lars Boilesen, CEO, Opera Software. “We are happy to welcome Airtel into our partner community. Airtel’s strong presence in emerging markets, combined with Opera Mini’s technology, will make the mobile web available to millions of new users.”

Opera Software has agreements with 13 out of the top 30 operators globallyUsed by over 168 million users, Opera Mini is the world’s most popular web browser on mobile phones. Opera Mini’s popularity in emerging markets can be credited to its smooth performance on basic/non-smartphones.

Download Opera Mini from m.opera.com or visit the Airtel App Store.

To read more about Opera Mini’s features, visit http://www.opera.com/mobile/features/

Bharti airtel enters mobile advertising market

Bharti airtel enters mobile advertising market

If you are a user of airtel mobile services, you are probably going to hate this news.

The company has announced their plans to launch mobile advertising services.

This means that they would provide services to advertisers to promote their products and services on various platforms.

The company said: “Airtel’s m-advertising platform will enable advertisers to land their message in a simple, effective manner in an increasingly complex media environment”.

The scary part of the news is that the company hinted that their digital television services are included in this venture.

If you are an airtel DTH service user, you would have already seen advertisements on your television. For a service that you pay for, it is getting insanely absurd.

airtel set to launch LTE services in India this month!

Bharti airtel is likely to become the first telecom operator in India to launch LTE services in the Indian market.

The company aims to start with Kolkata this month.

airtel set to launch LTE services in India this month!

LTE is basically a 4G technology and would enable the company to offer faster wireless internet speeds to interested customers.

Remains to be seen what kind of speed airtel is going to offer and at what prices and with what limits!

Airtel however would not be able to offer LTE throughout the country as they have the rights to only four markets: Kolkata, Maharashtra, Punjab and Karnataka. Other markets would have to wait till Reliance launches their LTE platform.

Other operators with limited rights are: Qualcomm, Tikona, Aircel and Augere. BSNL and MTNL are also likely to launch LTE in the future.