Though, there is still a lot of ambiguity about the commercial launch of 4G services by Reliance Jio, the Mukesh Ambani led company is preparing the background by procuring smartphones from different vendors to offer its future subscribers.
“Reliance Jio has procured two lakhs ZTE smartphones, most likely the Blade S6, and currently is testing the device as it prepares for the commercial launch of its 4G services,” a person familiar with the development said to The Mobile Indian.
The source further added, “Reliance Jio has also initiated the process of buying a couple of smartphones from Yu, a smartphone brand of Micromax.” However information about the models (of Yu) is not available.
Note that the ZTE Blade S6 smartphone was launched earlier in January this year and is currently not available in the market. It was priced around Rs 15,000 in the retail market when it was launched. It has a 5.00-inch display with a resolution of 720X1280 pixels. It is powered by the 1GHz octa-core Qualcomm Snapdragon 615 processor and 2GB RAM.
The ZTE Blade S6 runs on Android 5.0 and has 16GB of internal storage that can be expanded via a microSD card. As far as the cameras are concerned, the Blade S6 packs a 13-megapixel primary camera and a 5-megapixel front shooter. It has a 2400 mAh non removable battery.
The dual SIM ZTE Blade S6 has Proximity sensor, Ambient light sensor, Accelerometer, and Gyroscope sensors.
Vodafone today announced the roll out of its 4G network in India on the 1800 MHz band, from Kochi, Kerala. Vodafone’s 4G service in Kochi is to be available for customers from 14th December.
Announcing the launch of Vodafone’s 4G service in India, Sunil Sood, managing director and chief executive officer, Vodafone India said, “We are delighted to launch our ultrafast 4G services in India that will give customers the power to experience the most advanced wireless broadband experience available across the globe today. As a steadfast partner of Digital India, we remain focused on deploying multiple technologies -be it 2G, 3G and now 4G-for optimum use as each technology has its own vital role to play in servicing the myriad connectivity needs of consumers across the country. ”
Meanwhile, Vodafone also added that it will roll out 4G services in Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru and Kolkata in the first phase. “Testing of 4G services in these locations has already commenced successfully and Vodafone India has partnered with leading global technology service providers for the network roll-out,” the operator further added.
For its customers in Kochi, Vodafone is offering free upgrade to 4G to all its users, free unlimited movie subscription of Hungama Play – access to 7500 + titles (including 200+ Malayalam movies) – for 3 months, free unlimited music streaming on Vodafone Music, 100 per cent extra data for all 4G RED customers for 3 months, and 4G Mobile WiFi that supports connectivity for up to 10 devices.
As per Vodafone, Kochi can opt for a trial pack of 120MB at Rs 29 while a bonanza pack of 20GB can be available at Rs 2,499.
Vodafone subscribers in Kochi can swap their SIMs for a 4G SIM at all Vodafone stores and select retail outlets in the city, else they can request for 4G SIM through call centre and SMS <4GSIM to 199> to get the same day door-step delivery of postpaid 4G SIMs (for requests received before 4:00pm that day).
Verizon will soon begin testing sponsored data plans, in which Internet companies pay to keep their traffic from counting against users’ data caps.
The tests will begin in the next few days, followed by a larger commercial rollout in the first quarter of next year, Recode reports. It’s unclear which companies will take part in these plans, which Verizon likens to toll-free calling.
Verizon won’t be the first carrier to test this kind of scheme. In January 2014, AT&T announced its own “Sponsored Data” plan, which also lets companies pay to steer clear of data caps. Nearly two years later, that program is still in a limited trial, and not a single major streaming service is participating.
Meanwhile, T-Mobile doesn’t count certain streaming music and video services against users’ data caps, but with a crucial difference: Those services don’t have to pay a toll. In the case of Music Freedom, T-Mobile simply supports an expanding list of popular services. Binge On is open to any legal video service, provided they meet technical requirements such as 480p resolution streaming. (Still, one might argue that T-Mobile’s largesse is paving the way for more money-grubbing plans from AT&T and Verizon.)
There’s still some uncertainty about whether sponsored data programs are allowed under the Federal Communications Commission’s net neutrality rules, which forbid paid traffic prioritization but don’t explicitly prohibit toll-free data. AT&T has been seeking clarity on the matter before expanding its own programs, and Verizon’s latest moves could prompt the FCC to pipe up.
The impact on you at home: Just as AT&T did, Verizon will likely pitch sponsored data as a win-win. Internet companies get promotion, and consumers effectively get more data. In reality, these programs are a form of double-dipping, with revenue coming from both the subscribers and from the services those subscribers want to access. The downside is that smaller services will face a disadvantage if they can’t pay the toll. And either way, the money has to come from somewhere, which means users could end up paying more for streaming video and other online services.