Reliance Jio earlier this week faced public outcry for its move of charging six paise per minute on outgoing calls made to other networks from Thursday. Now, the Mumbai-headquartered telco has announced that it will continue to offer free outgoing call benefits to non-Jio numbers for all customers who have recharged on or before October 9. The company had previously claimed that the new voice charge would be at the prevailing Interconnect Usage Charge (IUC) rate that has been fixed by Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) for mobile operators enabling inter-networking outgoing calls. To compensate for the additional Jio voice call charges being forced on the customers, the operator has decided to give additional 1GB data on every Rs. 10 spent.
Through a tweet posted by its official account, Reliance Jio has announced that for all customers who have recharged on or before October 9, it will continue to offer free call benefits on outgoing calls. The benefits will, however, be given until the expiry date of the existing Jio plan.
This means that you can make free outgoing calls from your Jio number to other mobile networks until your existing plan expires. Thereafter, you'll be required to recharge with one of the new IUC top-up vouchers in order to make off-net outgoing calls post the expiry of your plan.
Reliance Jio earlier this week announced four IUC top-up vouchers -- ranging from Rs. 10 to Rs. 100. These vouchers offer up to 1,362 minutes along with as much as 20GB data entitlement. The new top-up vouchers are required irrespective of which Jio plan you have to avail outgoing calls to non-Jio numbers.
It is worth mentioning here that while Jio users are required to purchase an IUC top-up voucher to make voice calls to other mobile networks, they can continue to make free calls to Jio numbers and use Voice-over-Internet-Protocol (VoIP) platforms such as WhatsApp or Apple's FaceTime using their available data quota.
Although Reliance Jio faced criticism from the public for its new move that is contrary to the original promise of offering free voice calls, the operator isn't likely to take a step back. It had mentioned that the charge on off-net outgoing calls would remain until the time TRAI moves to a zero termination charge regime that is expected to take place starting January 1, 2020.